Pediatric (children’s) brain tumor is any form of an abnormal mass of overgrown cells in the brain of the child or in the structure of tissues surrounding it. At times, most of the brain tumors in children are benign (non-cancerous) in nature and do not pose any great threat. However, in case the child’s brain tumor is found to be malignant (cancerous) in nature it is likely to affect the surrounding parts of the brain around it and cause additional complications and some very serious health problems.
These pediatric brain tumors are further divided into various types mostly depending on the location as well as certain other factors related to it. A pediatric brain tumor is somewhat different from an adult brain tumor as the child’s brain is in the development stage hence, the treatment required for it is also different than that for an adult brain tumor.
There are a large number of different tumor types that can affect a child. Pediatric brain tumors may differ from adult brain tumors in nature as well as type. These are mostly classified into stages according to the area affected as well as the characteristic of spreading to the surrounding healthy tissue. These are increasingly graded as being mild (Stage 1) to extremely severe or malignant (Stage 4) end-stage brain tumor.
The most common forms of a brain tumor in children are medulla-blastomas and gliomas (such as optic nerve gliomas, ependymomas, brain stem gliomas and astrocytomas).
These are the other less-commonly seen brain tumors in children:
The classification of brain tumors in children is also done according to the location of the tumor within the child’s brain.
These are the most common locations found for brain tumors in children:
There are various forms of treatment methods available to treat brain tumors in children and the exact type will usually depend on the location, severity as well as the type of brain tumor itself for ensuring maximum success.
The treatment of brain tumors in children differs significantly when compared to the treatment of brain tumors in adults as the child’s brain and the body is in the developing stage.
The type of treatment for brain tumors in children will depend mainly on:
Surgical removal of brain tumors in children is the most common form of treatment procedure available today for brain tumors in children, especially. In case the brain tumor is found to be benign in nature the neurosurgeon will safely remove the brain tumor completely for successful treatment.
Radiotherapy may also be used after a surgical brain tumor removal in cases the location of the brain tumor prohibits entire surgical removal of the tumor. The radiation helps to destroy any remaining tumor cells. Radiation therapy alone is also used to treat brain tumors which are in hard-to-reach locations in the child’s brain.
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