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Pediatr Endocrinol Rev. 2010 Sep;8(1):6-17.

Pediatric brain tumor treatment: growth consequences and their management.

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  • 1Department of Pediatrics, Divisions of Endocrinology and Oncology, The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA 19104, USA.


Tumors of the central nervous system, the most common solid tumors of childhood, are a major source of cancer-related morbidity and mortality in children. Survival rates have improved significantly following treatment for childhood brain tumors, with this growing cohort of survivors at high risk of adverse medical and late effects. Endocrine morbidities are the most prominent disorder among the spectrum of longterm conditions, with growth hormone deficiency the most common endocrinopathy noted, either from tumor location or after cranial irradiation and treatment effects on the hypothalamic/pituitary unit. Deficiency of other anterior pituitary hormones can contribute to negative effects on growth, body image and composition, sexual function, skeletal health, and quality of life. Pediatric and adult endocrinologists often provide medical care to this increasing population. Therefore, a thorough understanding of the epidemiology and pathophysiology of growth failure as a consequence of childhood brain tumor, both during and after treatment, is necessary and the main focus of this review.

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