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Optic Pathway Gliomas

Avery, Robert A DO, MSCE; Fisher, Michael J MD; Liu, Grant T MD

Section Editor(s): Liu, Grant T MD; Kardon, Randy H MD, PhD

doi: 10.1097/WNO.0b013e31822aef82
State-of-the-Art Review
Japanese Abstract

Background: Childhood optic pathway gliomas (OPGs) are low-grade neoplasms intrinsic to the optic nerve, optic chiasm, tracts, and radiations. The management of OPGs is still a highly controversial topic among neuro-ophthalmologists.

Evidence Acquisition: Authors' personal experience and literature review.

Results: This review describes our current understanding of the behavior of OPGs and discusses advances in their imaging, evaluation, and management. Patients with OPGs that progress are typically treated with chemotherapy using carboplatin and vincristine; however, newer approaches to therapy are being explored.

Conclusions: Although chemotherapy is the mainstay of treatment when indicated, multicenter collaborative studies involving oncologists and neuro-ophthalmologists, both retrospective and prospective, are still needed to establish evidence-based guidelines for the management of children with OPGs.

Department of Neurology (RAA) and Gilbert Family Neurofibromatosis Institute (RAA), Children's National Medical Center, Washington, District of Columbia; Division of Oncology (MJF) and Neuro-Ophthalmology Service (GTL), Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; and Departments of Pediatrics (MJF), Neurology (GTL), and Ophthalmology (GTL), School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Dr. Avery was supported by the National Institutes of Health/National Eye Institute Pediatric Research Loan repayment program.

R. A. Avery and M. J. Fisher contributed equally.

The authors report no conflicts of interest.

Address correspondence to: Grant T. Liu, MD, Division of Neuro-Ophthalmology, Department of Neurology, School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, 3400 Spruce Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104; E-mail:

© 2011 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.