Desmoid Tumor | Treatments

What's the treatment for a Desmoid tumor?

Treatment depends on the extent of the problem and your child's overall health and medical history.

Treatment your doctor recommends may include:

  • Surgery: Surgical removal of your child's tumor by a surgeon is the primary treatment; and because Desmoid tumor rarely metastasizes, surgery alone is often the only treatment. However, Desmoid tumors often return, so sometimes more than one surgery is needed.
  • Anti-inflammatory medication: Given to help manage pain and swelling. In some cases these medications will cause the tumor to slowly shrink.
  • Radiation therapy: Using high-energy rays (radiation) from a specialized machine to damage or kill cancer cells and shrink tumors; radiation is used alone or in conjunction with surgery.
  • Hormone therapy: Because some hormones seem to increase the growth of Desmoid tumors, anti-hormonal medications are sometimes used in treatment.
  • Chemotherapy: If surgeons are unable to remove your child's tumor because of the size or location, researchers are testing some types of chemotherapy to reduce the tumor

What is the recommended long-term care for children treated for Desmoid tumors?

Children should visit a survivorship clinic every year to:

  • manage disease complications
  • screen for early recurrence of cancer
  • manage late effects of

A typical follow-up visit may include some or all of the following:

  • a physical exam
  • laboratory testing
  • imaging

Through the David B. Perini Jr. Quality of Life Clinic at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, childhood cancer survivors receive a comprehensive follow-up evaluation from their cancer care team.

  • Our childhood cancer survivorship clinic is held weekly.
  • In addition to meeting with your pediatric oncologists, your child may see one of our endocrinologists, cardiologists, neurologists, neuro-psychologists, or alternative/complementary therapy specialists.

       We also offer the following services:

  • patient and family education
  • psychosocial assessment
  • genetic counseling
  • reproductive and fertility evaluation and counseling
  • opportunities to speak with other childhood cancer survivors