Last Reviewed : 12/28/2020

Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM), also known as glioblastoma and grade IV astrocytoma, is the most common and most aggressive cancer that begins within the brain.Signs and symptoms are initially non-specific. They may include headaches, personality changes, nausea, and symptoms similar to that of a stroke.Worsening of symptoms is often rapid. This can progress to unconsciousness.

The cause of most cases is unclear.Uncommon risk factors include genetic disorders such as neurofibromatosis and Li Fraumeni syndrome and previous radiation therapy.Glioblastomas represent 15% of brain tumors.They can either start from normal brain cells or develop from an already existing low-grade astrocytoma.The diagnosis is typically made by a combination of CT scan, MRI scan, and tissue biopsy.

There is no clear way to prevent the disease. Typically treatment involves surgery after which chemotherapy and radiation therapy is used. The medication temozolomide is frequently used as part of chemotherapy.High dose steroids may be used to help reduce swelling and decrease symptoms.It is unclear if trying to remove all or simply most of the cancer is better.

Despite maximum treatment, the cancer usually recurs.The most common length of survival following diagnosis is 12 to 15 months with less than 3 to 5% of people surviving greater than five years.Without treatment survival is typically 3 months.About 3 per 100,000 people develop the disease a year.It most often begins around 64 years of age and occurs more commonly in males than females.Immunotherapy is being studied in glioblastoma with promising results.


We researched this topic for you and found the following best online resources. They are categorized into basic, advanced, and research level based on the extent of information you need. You will be taken to the respective websites by pressing on the links below.


Basic information: brain tumor association glioblastoma multiforme web md what is glioblastoma? brain tumor charity glioblastoma irsa glioblastoma multiforme brain tumor glioblastoma multiforme (gbm) everyday health brain tumor: glioblastoma multiforme cedar sinai glioblastoma multiforme brain tumors merck manuals gliomas mayoclinic glioblastoma multiforme diagnosis


Advanced information: medscape glioblastoma multiforme glioblastoma multiforme and anaplastic gliomas:
a patient guide by john w. Henson, m.d., mgh brain tumor center association of neurological surgeons glioblastoma multiforme glioblastoma: is survival possible? By ben a. Williams patient gliomas and glioblastoma multiforme

University of california, san diego health sciences. "clinical study suggests the origin of glioblastoma subtypes." sciencedaily. Sciencedaily, 5 may 2016. nord glioblastoma multiforme radiopedia glioblastoma multiforme glioblastoma (cancer affecting the brain) a guide for journalists on glioblastoma and its treatment news experimental therapy stops glioblastoma, high-grade gliomas in human cells and mouse models physiopedia glioblastoma multiforme


Research: review article front. Oncol., 30 november 2012 | repair of 3-methyladenine and abasic sites by base excision repair mediates glioblastoma resistance to temozolomide by michael s. Bobola et al.,

mendez g, ozpinar a, raskin j, gultekin sh, ross da. Case comparison and literature review of glioblastoma: a tale of two tumors. Surg neurol int 02-aug-2014;5:121. Available from:

Khan mb, riaz m, bari me. Is surgical spinal decompression for supratentorial gbm symptomatic drop down metastasis warranted? A case report and review of literature. Surg neurol int 27-mar-2014;5:40. Available from: eosinophils in glioblastoma biology by colleen s curran and paul j bertics journal of neuroinflammation20129:11 doi: 10.1186/1742-2094-9-11 review article:front. Pharmacol., 30 december 2013 | the potential of polymeric micelles in the context of glioblastoma therapy by ramin a. Morshed et al., notch signaling in glioblastoma: a developmental drug target? By maria maddalena lino,adrian merlo and jean-louis boulay bmc medicine20108:72 doi: 10.1186/1741-7015-8-72

Mallick s, gandhi ak, rath gk. Therapeutic approach beyond conventional temozolomide for newly diagnosed glioblastoma: review of the present evidence and future direction. Indian j med paediatr oncol [serial online] 2015 [cited 2016 jun 10];36:229-37. Available from: review article front. Oncol., 14 march 2014 | biological rationale for the use of ppar? agonists in glioblastoma by hayley patricia ellis and kathreena mary kurian

Agarwal s, suri v, sharma m c, sarkar c. Therapy and progression – induced o6-methylguanine-dna methyltransferase and mismatch repair alterations in recurrent glioblastoma multiforme. Indian j cancer [serial online] 2015 [cited 2016 jun 10];52:568-73. Available from:

Wilson ta, karajannis ma, harter dh. Glioblastoma multiforme: state of the art and future therapeutics. Surg neurol int 08-may-2014;5:64. Available from:

Maroon jc, seyfried tn, donohue jp, bost j. The role of metabolic therapy in treating glioblastoma multiforme. Surg neurol int 16-apr-2015;6:61. Available from: case reports in oncological medicine
volume 2013 (2013), article id 431857, 5 pages case report:long-term survival and improved quality of life following multiple repeat gamma knife radiosurgeries for recurrent glioblastoma multiforme: a case report and review of the literature by erik w. Larson et al., case reports in medicine
volume 2012 (2012), article id 545492, 6 pages case report:long-term survival after gamma knife radiosurgery in a case of recurrent glioblastoma multiforme: a case report and review of the literature by sudheer r. Thumma et al.,

Shah kc, rajshekhar v. Glioblastoma multiforme in a child with acute lymphoblastic leukemia: case report and review of literature. Neurol india [serial online] 2004 [cited 2016 jun 10];52:375-7. Available from:

Schultz s, pinsky gs, wu nc, chamberlain mc, rodrigo a s, martin se. Fine needle aspiration diagnosis of extracranial glioblastoma multiforme: case report and review of the literature. Cytojournal [serial online] 2005 [cited 2016 jun 10];2:19. Available from:

Kumar n, bhattacharya t, kumar r, radotra bd, mukherjee kk, kapoor r, ghoshal s. Is neurocysticercosis a risk factor for glioblastoma multiforme or a mere coincidence: a case report with review of literature. J neurosci rural pract [serial online] 2013 [cited 2016 jun 10];4:67-9. Available from:

Schultz s, pinsky gs, wu nc, chamberlain mc, rodrigo a s, martin se. Fine needle aspiration diagnosis of extracranial glioblastoma multiforme: case report and review of the literature. Cytojournal [serial online] 2005 [cited 2016 jun 10];2:19. Available from:

Kasliwal mk, gupta dk, mahapatra ak, sharma mc. Congenital glioblastoma multiforme: a case report and review of literature. J pediatr neurosci [serial online] 2007 [cited 2016 jun 10];2:69-71. Available from:

Mishra ss, behera sk, dhir mk, senapati sb. Cerebellar giant cell glioblastoma multiforme in an adult. J neurosci rural pract [serial online] 2014 [cited 2016 jun 10];5:295-7. Available from:


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