Journal of Neuro-Oncology

, Volume 10, Issue 1, pp 57–74 | Cite as

Interstitial chemotherapy for brain tumors: review

  • T. Tomita
Clinical Study


An extensive effort to search for curative chemotherapeutic approaches has found no ‘breakthrough’ in management of patients with malignant brain tumors. Despite the trials with new agents or protocols of multiple agents, systemic chemotherapy has failed to provide reliable clinical response. Interstitial chemotherapy has been practiced for malignant brain tumors with administering chemotherapeutic compounds directly into the tumor which provide increased and prolonged drug concentration in the tumor, reduction of systemic toxicity and bypassing the blood-brain barrier. These theoretical advantages encourage further pursuing interstitial chemotherapy for patients with malignant brain tumors who would otherwise be always fatal.

In this review, the literature has been reviewed to identify methods toxicity and efficacy of interstitial chemotherapy. Clinical and experimental data indicate limited toxicity and promising efficacy. Various methods to administer the agents were utilized; intraoperative topical application, local injections through catheters or implantable controlled drug delivery system. Selection of ideal chemotherapeutic agents and development of drug delivery system need further investigations.

Key words

brain neoplasm chemotherapy drug delivery system intraneoplastic injection 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • T. Tomita
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Division of Pediatric NeurosurgeryChildren's Memorial HospitalChicagoUSA
  2. 2.Northwestern University Medical SchoolChicagoUSA

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