Brain tumor – children

Alternative Names

Glioblastoma multiforme – children; Ependymoma – children; Glioma – children; Astrocytoma – children; Medulloblastoma – children; Neuroglioma – children; Oligodendroglioma – children; Meningioma – children; Cancer – brain tumor (children)

Definition of Brain tumor – children

A primary brain tumor is a group (mass) of abnormal cells that start in the brain. This article focuses on primary brain tumors in children.

Causes, incidence, and risk factors

The cause of primary brain tumors is unknown. Primary brain tumors may be:


Symptoms may be subtle and only gradually become worse, or they may occur very quickly.

Signs and tests

The health care provider will perform a physical exam. Infants may have the following physical signs:


Early treatment often improves the chance of a good outcome. Treatment, however, depends on the size and type of tumor and the general health of the child.

Expectations (prognosis)

About 3 out of 4 children survive at least 5 years after being diagnosed with a brain tumor.


Yi-Bin Chen, MD, Leukemia/Bone Marrow Transplant Program, Massachusetts General Hospital. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc. – 12/27/2009

Primary brain tumor

ADAM Medical Encyclopedia

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