Carmustine Implants and Temozolomide for the Treatment of Newly Diagnosed High-Grade Glioma (TA121)

Technology Appraisal Guidance No. 121

Source: National Institute for Health and Care Excellence

1. Guidance

Temozolomide and carmustine implants have been appraised separately for the treatment of newly diagnosed high-grade glioma. On the basis of the evidence presented to the Committee, no recommendation can be made regarding the sequential use of these treatments for newly diagnosed high-grade glioma.

1.1 Temozolomide, within its licensed indications, is recommended as an option for the treatment of newly diagnosed glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) in patients with a World Health Organization (WHO) performance status of 0 or 1.

1.2 Carmustine implants, within their licensed indications, are recommended as an option for the treatment of newly diagnosed high-grade glioma only for patients in whom 90% or more of the tumour has been resected.

1.3 Treatment with carmustine implants should be provided only within specialist centres that in general conform to guidance in 'Improving outcomes for people with brain and other central nervous system tumours' (NICE cancer service guidance 2006), and should be supervised by specialist neurosurgeons who spend at least 50% of their clinical programmed activities in neuro-oncological surgery. The specialists should also have access to:

  • multidisciplinary teams to enable preoperative identification of patients in whom maximal resection is likely to be achievable
  • magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to enable preoperative identification of patients in whom maximal resection is likely to be possible, and
  • image-directed technology, such as neuronavigation, for use intraoperatively to assist the achievement of maximal resection.

1.4 Carmustine implants are not recommended for the treatment of newly diagnosed high-grade glioma for patients in whom less than 90% of the tumour has been resected.


The guidance shown above constitutes Section 1 of the full document. A copy of the full document and a summary of the evidence is available on the Internet at www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ta121

This guidance represents the view of the Institute which was arrived at after careful consideration of the available evidence. Health professionals are expected to fully take it into account when exercising their clinical judgement. This guidance does not, however, override the individual responsibility of health professionals to make appropriate decisions in the circumstances of the individual patient, in consultation with the patient and/or guardian or carer.

© Copyright National Institute for Health and Care Excellence. All rights reserved. This material may be freely reproduced for educational and not for profit purposes within the NHS. No reproduction by or for commercial organisations is permitted without the express written permission of the Institute.

Enquiries concerning the guidance should be addressed to: National Institute for Health and Care Excellence, MidCity Place, 71 High Holborn, London WC1V 6NA. email: nice@nice.org.uk

Carmustine Implants and Temozolomide for the Treatment of Newly Diagnosed High-Grade Glioma.
Issue Date: June 2007


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