Radiation therapy for intracranial tumours in cats with neurological signs

Maximilian Körner, Malgorzata Roos, Valeria S Meier, Alena Soukup, Simona Cancedda, Magdalena M Parys, Michelle Turek, Carla Rohrer Bley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives The aim of this study was to evaluate the outcome of cats with intracranial tumours presenting with neurological signs treated with radiation therapy. Methods This study comprised a retrospective multi-centre case series. Medical records of a total of 22 cats with intracranial space-occupying lesions, presenting with neurological signs and/or epileptic seizures and treated with external beam radiation therapy, were reviewed. In the treated cats, patient-, tumour- and treatment-related variables were investigated, including age, sex, tumour location, tumour volume, total radiation dose, equivalent dose in 2 Gy fractions (EQD2), corticosteroid dose, overall treatment time and institution for influence on local tumour control and survival. Results Based on advanced imaging characteristics, the 22 treated cats presented with meningioma (n = 11), pituitary tumour (n = 8), choroid plexus tumour (n = 2) or glioma (n = 1). Allocated to the neuraxis, 11 lesions were extra-axial, three intra-axial and eight were located in the pituitary region. At diagnosis, 21 cats exhibited altered neurological status. One cat presented with epileptic seizures and another cat had both seizures and altered neurological status. The mean total physical dose of radiation was 41.63 Gy (± 4.33), range 24-45 Gy. In all but one cat (95.5%), neurological signs improved after radiation therapy. The median progression-free survival was 510 days (95% confidence interval [CI]: 51-969). The proportion free of progression at 1 year was 55.7% (95% CI: 33-78). Fourteen cats died (only in five cases was death related to the intracranial tumour) and eight cats were still alive or lost to follow-up. The median overall survival time was 515 days (95% CI: 66-964). None of the tested variables influenced outcome. Conclusion and relevance Radiation therapy seems to represent a viable treatment option in cats with intracranial tumours, relieving neurological signs and improving local tumour control. Radiation therapy may be considered for cats with tumours in complicated/inoperable localisations or for cases with a high peri- and postoperative risk.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1098612X18801032
JournalJournal of Feline Medicine and Surgery
Early online date19 Oct 2018
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 19 Oct 2018


  • Brain tumour
  • meningioma
  • glioma
  • radiation therapy
  • intracranial
  • radiotherapy
  • pituitary

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Radiation therapy for intracranial tumours in cats with neurological signs'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this