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Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys. 1990 Apr;18(4):815-8.

Childhood cerebellar astrocytomas: is there a role for postoperative irradiation?

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  • 1Mallinckrodt Institute of Radiology, Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO 63110.


Eighty children with astrocytomas of the cerebellum were treated at Washington University Medical Center in St. Louis, Missouri from 1928-1980. The most important predictor of recurrence was completeness of surgical removal. Of 40 patients whose tumors were totally removed, only one recurred (2.5%). Forty cases were subtotally removed and 14 subsequently recurred (35%). Postoperative irradiation did not significantly improve survival in the patients with incompletely excised tumors; however, there was lack of uniformity in the radiation therapy. Although a survival advantage could not be demonstrated, there was a trend toward a lowering of the recurrence rates in patients with subtotally excised solid tumors who received radiation therapy.

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