Steroids are used throughout medicine due to their ability to reduce inflammation and suppress the immune system; however, they have numerous well-documented adverse effects, such as hyperglycemia, peripheral edema, gastrointestinal bleeding, osteoporosis, increased risk of infection, and impaired wound healing. These adverse effects must be considered before initiating steroid treatment. In the neurosurgical setting, steroids are the first-line treatment for symptomatic peritumoural vasogenic edema in patients with malignant brain tumours. Despite their widespread use before, during, and after brain surgery, the adverse effects of perioperative steroids in the surgical treatment of malignant brain tumours have not been well studied.
Based on the noted association between preoperative steroids and infectious complications after neurosurgery, we plan to conduct a retrospective chart review to examine the risks and benefits of perioperative steroids in adult patients undergoing surgical treatment for a malignant brain tumour. We will analyze data collected from adult patients who underwent a craniotomy for treatment of a malignant brain tumour at Windsor Regional Hospital between January 2015 and December 2021 to determine whether higher cumulative perioperative steroid dosage is associated with an increased risk of postoperative complications. The results from this retrospective study will be used to guide a prospective study in the future