Background: Congenital brain tumors are extremely rare in the neonatal population, and often associated with a poor prognosis. The diagnostic suspicion is often aroused at antenatal scans or postnatally, if clinical signs and symptoms of increased intracranial pressure become evident. We present a case of definitely congenital glioblastoma multiforme incidentally diagnosed in a preterm infant, aiming to raise clinical awareness on this condition and to highlight the challenges of the related diagnostic work-up. Case presentation: This female infant was born at 31 weeks’ gestation after an uneventful pregnancy. No abnormalities were detected at antenatal ultrasound scans and genetic tests. Head circumference at birth was on the 25th centile. A routine brain ultrasound scan performed on day 1 revealed a large, inhomogeneous lesion in the right cerebral hemisphere, with contralateral midline shift, which was confirmed by brain magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Eye fundus and routine blood exams, including platelets count, coagulation screening and C-reactive protein, were normal. Given the high risk of complications, surgical biopsy of the lesion was temporarily hold and a daily sonographic follow-up was undertaken. Although head circumference growth was steady on the 25th centile, progressive changes of the lesion were detected by cranial ultrasound. The repeat MRI scans showed a significant enlargement of the mass, with contralateral midline shift and signs of intralesional and intraventricular bleeding. In view of this worsening, surgical resection was performed. The histological examination of the lesion biopsy documented a GFAP+ highly cellular neoplasm, with no mutation on SMARCB1 gene. At the molecular analysis, mutations on IDH and H3F3A genes were absent, whereas MGMT promoter was unmethylated. The diagnosis was grade IV glioblastoma IDH wild-type. Conclusions: Congenital glioblastoma multiforme is an extremely rare but highly aggressive neoplasm. Since intralesional biopsy is not often feasible in affected neonates, knowledge of the associated clinical and neuroradiological features is particularly important, as they can also add useful information on the neoplasm behavior. Specimens from open surgical resection allow to perform a definite histological analysis and an extended molecular characterization, with relevant prognostic implications.

Diagnostic challenges of an incidental finding: case report of definitely-congenital glioblastoma multiforme in a very preterm infant

Martini S.
Primo
;
Paoletti V.;Locatelli C.;Fischer M.;Fabbri V. P.;Foschini M. P.;Tallini G.;Corvaglia L.
2021

Abstract

Background: Congenital brain tumors are extremely rare in the neonatal population, and often associated with a poor prognosis. The diagnostic suspicion is often aroused at antenatal scans or postnatally, if clinical signs and symptoms of increased intracranial pressure become evident. We present a case of definitely congenital glioblastoma multiforme incidentally diagnosed in a preterm infant, aiming to raise clinical awareness on this condition and to highlight the challenges of the related diagnostic work-up. Case presentation: This female infant was born at 31 weeks’ gestation after an uneventful pregnancy. No abnormalities were detected at antenatal ultrasound scans and genetic tests. Head circumference at birth was on the 25th centile. A routine brain ultrasound scan performed on day 1 revealed a large, inhomogeneous lesion in the right cerebral hemisphere, with contralateral midline shift, which was confirmed by brain magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Eye fundus and routine blood exams, including platelets count, coagulation screening and C-reactive protein, were normal. Given the high risk of complications, surgical biopsy of the lesion was temporarily hold and a daily sonographic follow-up was undertaken. Although head circumference growth was steady on the 25th centile, progressive changes of the lesion were detected by cranial ultrasound. The repeat MRI scans showed a significant enlargement of the mass, with contralateral midline shift and signs of intralesional and intraventricular bleeding. In view of this worsening, surgical resection was performed. The histological examination of the lesion biopsy documented a GFAP+ highly cellular neoplasm, with no mutation on SMARCB1 gene. At the molecular analysis, mutations on IDH and H3F3A genes were absent, whereas MGMT promoter was unmethylated. The diagnosis was grade IV glioblastoma IDH wild-type. Conclusions: Congenital glioblastoma multiforme is an extremely rare but highly aggressive neoplasm. Since intralesional biopsy is not often feasible in affected neonates, knowledge of the associated clinical and neuroradiological features is particularly important, as they can also add useful information on the neoplasm behavior. Specimens from open surgical resection allow to perform a definite histological analysis and an extended molecular characterization, with relevant prognostic implications.
Martini S.; Paoletti V.; Maffei M.; Zucchelli M.; Locatelli C.; Fischer M.; Fabbri V.P.; Foschini M.P.; Tallini G.; Corvaglia L.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11585/859998
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