The average life expectancy for a patient diagnosed with gliobastoma multiforme is three months, according to Medscape. With aggressive treatment, including chemotherapy, surgical resection and radiation therapy, life expectancy increases to about 12 months. Only a quarter of patients are expected to be alive by two years.
Gliobastoma multiforme, or grade IV astrocytoma, is a primary brain cancer caused by an uncontrolled proliferation of support cells of the brain called astrocytes, states Medscape. Patients commonly experience symptoms of high intracranial pressure characterized by progressively worsening headaches, morning nausea and vomiting. Typically, headaches are worst when leaning forward. Treatments are aimed mainly toward slowing the progress of the cancer and alleviating discomfort. As of 2015, curative therapy remains elusive.