Brain cancers account for about 15% of pediatric cancers and are the second most common type of cancer in children. Since the brain controls learning, memory, senses (hearing, visual, smell, taste, touch), emotions, muscles, organs, and blood vessels, the presentation of symptoms varies accordingly.
Treatment of pediatric brain cancers (and non-malignant brain tumors) is more complex than is the treatment of some of the other childhood cancers. Surgery to remove the tumor is not always possible, either because the tumor is inaccessible or because surgical removal of the tumor would damage critical parts of the developing brain. Inoperable areas of the brain include the brain stem, thalamus, motor area, and deep areas of gray matter.
The prognosis of a brain tumor depends not only on the type, grade, and size of the tumor, but on its location in the brain. Another reason that malignant brain tumors can be difficult to treat is because the blood-brain barrier prevents chemotherapy from entering the brain and reaching the tumor when given systemically.
Learn more about brain cancers here.
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Brain Tumour Patients’ Charter of Rights
The Brain Tumour Patients’ Charter of Rights is a document designed to improve the care of people diagnosed with brain and central nervous system tumors.
DIPG Awareness Day is May 17
Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (DIPG) remains one of the deadliest forms of childhood cancer, with a long-term survival rate of less than 1%. An especially aggressive type of cancerous tumor, DIPG grows in an area of the brain stem known as the pons, which is responsible for many critical bodily functions like heartbeat, breathing, swallowing, eyesight, and balance.
Click here to learn more about DIPG Awareness Day and how you can help.
Read stories of DIPG warriors and more about DIPG here.