Diffuse pontine glioma
We have four pediatric neuro-oncologists but we don't just work in isolation--we work with a team of neurosurgeons, a radiation oncologist, neurologists, neuropathologists and neuro-radiologists because it works best when you put all these experts together.
Mark Kieran, MD, PhD, director of the Pediatric Brain Tumors Program
Having a tumor in the brain is always a very serious matter, and a diffuse pontine glioma (also called a brainstem glioma) is no exception. Diffuse pontine glioma is a highly aggressive and difficult to treat brain tumor and is found at the base of the brain in the pons, which controls vital body functions, such as breathing.
Diffuse pontine glioma is a glial tumor, meaning that it arises in the glial (supportive) tissue of the lowest, stem-like part of the brain, which controls many of the body’s most vital functions.
Diffuse pontine gliomas account for 10 to 15 percent of all childhood central nervous system tumors.
The median age at diagnosis is 5 to 9 years old but they can occur at any age in childhood.
- These tumors occur with equal frequency in boys and girls and do not generally appear in adults.
As you read on, you’ll find detailed information about diffuse pontine gliomas. If you would like to read more general information about brain tumors first, see the overview on brain tumors.
How Dana-Farber/Children’s Hospital Cancer Center approaches diffuse pontine glioma
If your child is cared for at Children’s, she’ll be seen through Dana-Farber/Children’s Hospital Cancer Center, an integrated pediatric oncology program through Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Children’s Hospital Boston that provides—in one specialized program—all the services of both a leading cancer center and a pediatric hospital.
|After your child’s treatment is complete, you can find resources to cope with any side effects of treatment through our Stop & Shop Family Neuro-Oncology Outcomes Clinic.|
Reviewed by Mark Kieran, MD, PhD
© Children’s Hospital Boston, 2010