Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.


Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Radiotherapy linked to mental decline in brain cancer survivors

  • Comment

Doses of radiotherapy given to brain cancer patients that were thought to be safe could cause a gradual mental decline, a report has said.

Patients suffering with the most common form of brain tumour, low-grade glioma, are often treated with radiotherapy. The new research shows a mental decline in patients over a period of 12 years, compared to the previous findings which were carried out over six years.

Of those treated with radiotherapy, over half suffered a mental decline, compared to the 27% who experienced similar problems who had not been treated in this way. Radiotherapy patients were found to process information slower, as well as have poorer executive and attentional functioning.

The report, which has been published in the journal The Lancet Neurology and was led by Linda Douw from the VU University Medical Centre in Amsterdam, stated: ‘The current results indicate that radiotherapy is associated with long-term cognitive deterioration, regardless of fraction dose.’

Careful consideration should be carried out before admitting low-grade glioma sufferers for radiotherapy, the report concluded.


  • Comment

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions. Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.