Brain Stem Glioma, Childhood

Overview

Type of disease: Rare conditions

Brain Stem Glioma is a type of brain cancer characterized by abnormal cell growth in the brain stem of the brain. Individuals with this disorder may grow harmful or harmless tumors in the brain that can impair brain function and spread to the rest of the body if not diagnosed and treated early. The brain stem is important for maintaining eye movements, muscle movements, and motor coordination. Brain stem tumors can thus cause individuals to be less capable of performing important movements, like walking and running. Some individuals may loss their ability to move certain parts of their body (paralysis). This disorder develops in childhood. Doctors might suspect this disorder based on symptoms related to coordination problems, difficulty with movements, or headaches. It is typically diagnosed with a imaging test called an MRI. Treatment is developed on a case-by-case basis and depends on the specific needs of the patient. If an individual’s cancer has progressed, doctors may suggest chemotherapy or surgery to combat cancer symptoms.

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