In this report, we review 41 patients with intracranial germ cell tumors (GCTs) treated at the Department of Neurosurgery, Keio University School of Medicine, in the 25-year period between January 1982 and July 2006. The main aim of the present study was to compare the effectiveness of our current intracranial GCT management protocol, comprising neoadjuvant chemo-radiotherapy without surgical biopsy of tumors as far as possible, to that of historical controls. In all patients, charts were reviewed and tumor and patient characteristics, including age, sex, type of tumor marker secreted, treatment protocol, and clinical outcomes, were compared. The relationship between these variables was analyzed by means of the Cox proportional hazards model. Thus far, four patients treated by approaches other than the current protocol have died of their tumor. The overall 5-, 10-, and 15-year survival rates of all the patients calculated by the Kaplan-Meier method were 91.9%, 88.6%, and 88.6%, respectively. According to the results of the Cox proportional hazards model, patients with secreting GCTs show statistically poorer prognoses than those with non-secreting GCTs (P = 0.0073), and although not statistically significant, patients treated with our current protocol tend to show better prognoses than historical controls (P = 0.0543). All five patients with secreting GCT treated using our current protocol are still alive after an average follow-up period exceeding 7 years, and only one of these has shown tumor recurrence. With our current treatment protocol comprising neoadjuvant chemo-radiotherapy without surgical biopsy, prognoses of patients with GCTs have improved compared to historical controls at our institution.
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