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The Brain Tumor Center at Boston Children’s Hospital and Dana-Farber Cancer Institute is the leading brain tumor program for children diagnosed with tumors of the brain and spinal cord. Our program specializes in treating the most complex and challenging brain tumor cases with care from a team of highly skilled clinicians with extensive expertise in these conditions.

Our mission is to provide our patients with the most advanced, comprehensive, and high-quality care available while pursuing scientific advancements that will establish novel treatments and cures for our patients.

How we care for pediatric brain tumors

In the Brain Tumor Center, we care for children with both common and rare tumors, including those that require highly specialized care or are difficult to treat, such as skull base tumors, brainstem tumors, spinal cord tumors, craniopharyngiomas, and more.

For each of our patients, we assemble an individualized team of pediatric brain tumor specialists who work together to develop recommendations for the most appropriate treatment. A typical brain tumor patient care team includes neuro-oncologists, neurosurgeons, neurologists, radiation oncologists, and other subspecialists with deep expertise in the specific types of brain tumors they treat.

Together, we offer patients the most advanced therapies and diagnostic approaches available, including:

Surgical expertise

  • Our physicians have deep expertise in complex neuro-endoscopy and minimally invasive neurosurgery.
  • We have two intraoperative MRI surgical suites, which allow us to obtain advanced MR imaging during surgery to ensure the highest level of safely along with maximal tumor removal. Benefits include live updates of neuro-navigation to maintain exact precision during neurosurgical procedures, as well as post-operative imaging prior to leaving the operating room, which helps prevent additional sedation for young children and provides immediate surgical results.
  • We have access to New England’s only pediatric positron emission tomography (PET) scanner and PET fusion imaging to help guide treatment decisions.
  • When appropriate for treatment, we also can refer your child locally for proton beam therapy.

Advanced tissue diagnostics

  • We have the ability to interpret genetic and molecular tissue data and apply the findings to individual patient care decisions, an approach called precision medicine.

Cancer genetic risk assessment

We work closely with the Pediatric Cancer Genetic Risk Program  — one of the few cancer genetic risk programs in the U.S. focused specifically on pediatric cancer risk — to provide comprehensive assessment and recommendations for managing cancer risk in children.

Second opinions

  • We offer expert second opinions for complex medical questions or decisions regarding a new diagnosis or treatment plan for your child.

Clinical trials

Our brain tumor treatment programs

The Brain Tumor Center features several world-class programs and clinics offering patients deep expertise and advanced therapies for specific conditions. Each program features an authority in their area of expertise as well as teams of subspecialists and nurses with focused training and years of proven experience.