A Part of the University of Maryland Medical Center

Connect with UMGCC
Facebook Twitter YouTube Blog iPhone
Email PageEmail page Print PagePrint page

Childhood Astrocytoma Treatment

Treatment Options for Childhood Astrocytomas

Childhood Low-Grade Astrocytomas

When the tumor is first diagnosed, treatment for childhood low-grade astrocytoma depends on the location of the tumor and is usually surgery. An MRI is done after surgery to see if there is tumor remaining.

If the tumor was completely removed by surgery, more treatment may not be needed and the child is closely watched to see if symptoms appear or change. This is also called watchful waiting.

If there is tumor remaining after surgery, treatment may include the following:

In some cases, children who have a visual pathway glioma will be treated by watchful waiting. In other cases, treatment may include surgery or radiation therapy. A goal of treatment is to save as much vision as possible. The effect of tumor growth on the child's vision will be closely followed during treatment.

Children with neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1) may not need treatment unless the tumor grows or symptoms, such as vision problems, appear.

Children with tuberous sclerosis may develop benign (not cancer) tumors in the brain called subependymal giant cell astrocytomas (SEGAs). These tumors may be treated with drugs to shrink them instead of surgery.

Recurrent Childhood Low-Grade Astrocytomas

Before more cancer treatment is given, imaging tests, biopsy, or surgery are done to be sure cancer is present and find out how much cancer there is.

Treatment of recurrent childhood low-grade astrocytoma may include the following:

Childhood High-Grade Astrocytomas

Treatment of childhood high-grade astrocytoma may include the following:

Recurrent Childhood High-Grade Astrocytomas

Treatment of recurrent childhood high-grade astrocytoma may include the following: