(HealthDay News) – A fluorescent compound can help localize the spread of recurrent glioblastoma multiforme during surgery, according to a case report published online Feb. 19 in the Journal of Neurosurgery.

Tene A. Cage, MD, from the University of California San Francisco, and colleagues describe the case of a 56-year-old man who had undergone resection of a right occipital lobe glioblastoma multiforme seven years earlier. Magnetic resonance imaging showed that the patient now had three distinct, new sites of tumor in the right temporal lobe, prompting concern of diffuse, infiltrative tumor elsewhere throughout the brain.

To localize the infiltrating tumor, the researchers administered 5-aminolevulinic acid (5-ALA) to the patient four hours before surgery. The fluorescent compound showed that the recurrent tumor had spread from the occipital lobe to the temporal lobe through the lateral ventricle, in the ependymal and subependymal regions.

“Adjunct intraoperative use of fluorescence-assisted visualization with 5-ALA may be helpful in highlighting and detecting infiltrative tumor to accurately detect tumor burden and distinguish it from a separate multicentric recurrence,” Cage and colleagues conclude.

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