THE NATIONAL COMPREHENSIVE Cancer Network (NCCN) has updated its Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology for Central Nervous System Cancers (NCCN Guidelines®) to recommend alternating electric field therapy (also known as tumor-treating fields, Optune) in combination with temozolomide as a category 1 treatment for patients with newly diagnosed glioblastoma. The NCCN panel members made this recommendation in conjunction with temozolomide after maximal safe resection and completion of radiation therapy.
The updated recommendation follows the publication of a phase III trial that demonstrated improvement in 5-year survival results with the combination therapy in The Journal of the American Medical Association.1 The study showed the combination therapy significantly improved survival outcomes compared with temozolomide alone.
More than 1,800 patients with glioblastoma are receiving therapy with tumor-treating fields as of December 31, 2017, and more than 7,000 patients with glioblastoma have received such treatment to date. Physicians at more than 700 cancer centers in the United States, and at more than 1,100 medical institutions globally, have been certified to prescribe this radiation therapy to patients with newly diagnosed and recurrent glioblastoma.
More on Therapy With Tumor-Treating Fields
THERAPY WITH tumor-treating fields is intended as a treatment for adult patients 22 years of age or older with histologically confirmed glioblastoma multiforme. In combination with temozolomide, it is indicated for the treatment of adult patients with newly diagnosed, supratentorial glioblastoma following maximal debulking surgery and completion of radiation therapy together with concomitant standard-of-care chemotherapy. ■
1. Effect of tumor-treating fields plus maintenance temozolomide vs maintenance temozolomide alone on survival in patients with glioblastoma. JAMA 318:2306-2316, 2017.