Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center is home to some of the world's most skilled pediatric oncologists. And while we're known for our science-driven approach to treating conditions like red blood cell disorders, our doctors never forget that your child is a child, and not just a patient.
We specialize in innovative, family-centered care. From your first visit, you'll work with a team of professionals who are committed to supporting all of your family's physical and psychosocial needs.
What are the treatments for a tectal glioma?
Surgeons may relieve symptoms caused by pressure within your child's brain by:
- surgically inserting a device called a shunt, which drains excessive fluid in your child's body
- conducting a procedure called a third ventriculoscopy, during which the surgeon creates a pathway to drain excess fluid into the third ventricle (a space within the brain that can accommodate this fluid)
Chemotherapy or radiation therapy also generally not prescribed for tectal glioma. Your child will be followed for evidence of progressive disease through frequent MRI scans (about every three months to start).
How are side effects managed?
Tectal glioma may lead to side effects related to the tumor itself and to its treatment. Symptoms related to increased pressure within the brain may be treated with:
- a shunt or third vertriculoscopy, as described above
- an oral steroid such as Dexamethasone
What is the expected outcome after treatment for tectal glioma?
Tectal gliomas are associated with a high rate of cure. Many children will demonstrate an increase in tumor size by MRI, however most will remain asymptomatic and not require further treatment other than serial MRI scanning.
What about progressive or recurrent disease?
There is no standard recommended treatment for progressive/recurrent tectal gliomas.
We are a member of the Pediatric Oncology Therapeutic Experimental Investigators Consortium (POETIC), a collaborative clinical research group offering experimental therapies to patients with relapsed or refractory disease.
We are also the New England Phase I Center of the Children's Oncology Group. If your child has progressive or recurrent tumor, she may be eligible for a number of experimental therapies available through these groups, or from one of our independent clinical investigators.