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Vol 12, No 5 (2016)
Review paper
Published online: 2017-03-08
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Leptomeningeal metastases in breast cancer patients — current rules of diagnosis and treatment

Anna Niwińska, Michał Kunkiel
DOI: 10.5603/OCP.2016.0010
·
Oncol Clin Pract 2016;12(5):179-184.

open access

Vol 12, No 5 (2016)
REVIEW ARTICLES
Published online: 2017-03-08

Abstract

Leptomeningeal metastases (LM) presents a challenge because of the difficulty in determining the diagnosis and lack of optimal therapy. Nowadays, LM are more frequently diagnosed as a consequence of the long survival of patients with breast cancer and the improvement in image analysis. LM is a deleterious complication of breast cancer leading to death of patients within less than 3–6 months from the diagnosis. No generally accepted standard of care in the treatment of breast cancer LM exists. The treatment of patients with breast cancer and LM is of limited efficacy and substantial toxicity. Usually it requires focal radiotherapy to symptomatic sites or areas of bulky disease, intra-cerebrospinal fluid chemotherapy, or systemic intravenous/oral therapy, but the data regarding the sequence and efficacy of particular types of treatment are disputable. The management of breast cancer patients with LM was reviewed based on the data from literature. Additionally, the results of randomised clinical trials were reviewed.

Abstract

Leptomeningeal metastases (LM) presents a challenge because of the difficulty in determining the diagnosis and lack of optimal therapy. Nowadays, LM are more frequently diagnosed as a consequence of the long survival of patients with breast cancer and the improvement in image analysis. LM is a deleterious complication of breast cancer leading to death of patients within less than 3–6 months from the diagnosis. No generally accepted standard of care in the treatment of breast cancer LM exists. The treatment of patients with breast cancer and LM is of limited efficacy and substantial toxicity. Usually it requires focal radiotherapy to symptomatic sites or areas of bulky disease, intra-cerebrospinal fluid chemotherapy, or systemic intravenous/oral therapy, but the data regarding the sequence and efficacy of particular types of treatment are disputable. The management of breast cancer patients with LM was reviewed based on the data from literature. Additionally, the results of randomised clinical trials were reviewed.

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Keywords

leptomeningeal metastasis, carcinomatous meningitis, intrathecal treatment, toxicity of treatment, breast cancer

About this article
Title

Leptomeningeal metastases in breast cancer patients — current rules of diagnosis and treatment

Journal

Oncology in Clinical Practice

Issue

Vol 12, No 5 (2016)

Article type

Review paper

Pages

179-184

Published online

2017-03-08

DOI

10.5603/OCP.2016.0010

Bibliographic record

Oncol Clin Pract 2016;12(5):179-184.

Keywords

leptomeningeal metastasis
carcinomatous meningitis
intrathecal treatment
toxicity of treatment
breast cancer

Authors

Anna Niwińska
Michał Kunkiel

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