Laser Interstitial Thermotherapy (LITT) in Recurrent Glioblastoma: What Window of Opportunity for This Treatment?

Technol Cancer Res Treat. 2024 Jan-Dec:23:15330338241249026. doi: 10.1177/15330338241249026.


Laser Interstitial Thermotherapy is a minimally invasive treatment option in neurosurgery for intracranial tumors, including recurrent gliomas. The technique employs the thermal ablation of target tissue to achieve tumor control with real-time monitoring of the extent by magnetic resonance thermometry, allowing targeted thermal injury to the lesion. Laser Interstitial Thermotherapy has gained interest as a treatment option for recurrent gliomas due to its minimally invasive nature, shorter recovery times, ability to be used even in patients with numerous comorbidities, and potential to provide local tumor control. It can be used as a standalone treatment or combined with other therapies, such as chemotherapy or radiation therapy. We describe the most recent updates regarding several studies and case reports that have evaluated the efficacy and safety of Laser Interstitial Thermotherapy for recurrent gliomas. These studies have reported different outcomes, with some demonstrating promising results in terms of tumor control and patient survival, while others have shown mixed outcomes. The success of Laser Interstitial Thermotherapy depends on various factors, including tumor characteristics, patient selection, and the experience of the surgical team, but the future direction of treatment of recurrent gliomas will include a combined approach, comprising Laser Interstitial Thermotherapy, particularly in deep-seated brain regions. Well-designed prospective studies will be needed to establish with certainty the role of Laser Interstitial Thermotherapy in the treatment of recurrent glioma.

Keywords: brain tumor; glioblastoma; glioma; laser interstitial thermotherapy; radiation necrosis; stereotactic laser ablation; thermotherapy.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Brain Neoplasms* / therapy
  • Combined Modality Therapy
  • Glioblastoma* / therapy
  • Humans
  • Hyperthermia, Induced* / methods
  • Laser Therapy* / methods
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local* / therapy
  • Treatment Outcome