Recurrent Spinal Cord Cystic Astrocytomas: Treatment with Rhenium-186 Intracavitary Radiation

  • Sophie Colnat-CoulboisEmail author
  • Jean-Claude Marchal
Part of the Tumors of the Central Nervous System book series (TCNS, volume 6)


Endocavitary irradiation or brachytherapy is frequently used for the treatment of intracranial cystic tumors. This treatment can also be used to treat low-grade astrocytoma of the spinal cord in the very specific case of symptomatic recurrent cysts, despite repetition of classical methods such as surgery or CT scan guided taping. We use 186 Rhenium isotope, which is able to penetrate the cyst wall from 1 to 2 mm. The isotope is injected using a CT scan, which checks the position of the top of the needle during the taping of the cyst and after its opacification with iodine contrast. Follow-up consists of spinal cord MR every 3–6 months. A second injection may be performed if the cyst keeps growing.


Spinal Cord Cyst Wall Cystic Tumor Pilocytic Astrocytoma Conventional Radiotherapy 
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© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Département de NeurochirurgieHôpital CentralNancyFrance

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