Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (DIPG) & Pediatric Brain Tumor Information and Support
Pediatric brain tumors are masses or growths of abnormal cells that occur in the brain or the tissue and structures that are near it. Many different types of pediatric brain tumors exist. Some pediatric brain tumors are noncancerous (benign), and some pediatric brain tumors are cancerous (malignant).
Treatment and chance of recovery (prognosis) depend on the tumor type, its location within the brain, whether it has spread, and your child's age and general health. Because new treatments and technologies are continually being developed, several options may be available at different points in treatment. Pediatric brain tumor treatment is tailored to the individual needs of your child and your family.
Brain tumors are the second most common type of malignancy in children less than 2 years of age. Childhood brain tumors occur more often in males than in females, with a 2:1 ratio, though the reason is not known. There has also been an unexplained increase in the incidence of brain tumors in infants over the last 20 years, though many believe this is due to earlier diagnosis. The treatment of pediatric brain tumors presents many difficult challenges, as the brain is still developing.
DIPG is the most common form of brainstem glioma in children. Approximately 300 children develop DIPG every year in North America and Europe. Currently, outcomes for most patients are poor, with a median survival of less than 1 year from diagnosis. Radiation therapy can shrink tumors, temporarily improving some symptoms and delaying the progression of the disease, but in almost all cases, the tumor continues to grow. So far, clinical trials have not shown that currently available chemotherapy drugs, radiosensitizing drugs (drugs that make tumor cells more likely to be killed by radiation therapy), or biologics (medical products created by biological processes, such as vaccines or gene therapy) benefit patients. Because of their location in the brainstem, DIPGs cannot be removed surgically. New approaches to treating DIPG are urgently needed.We NEED world class Scientists, Neurooncologists and Neurosurgeons and state of the art facilities, researching this insidious disease. We NEED A CURE or treatment that will allow our children a chance at survival.
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