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J Pediatr Hematol Oncol. 2011 Mar;33(2):116-8. doi: 10.1097/MPH.0b013e3181fe68e0.

Diffuse intrinsic brainstem tumor in an infant: a case of therapeutic efficacy with vinorelbine.

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Department of Pediatric Oncology, IOP/GRAACC/Federal University of São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil.


Brainstem gliomas constitute 10% to 20% of all pediatric tumors of the central nervous system, and diffusely infiltrative brainstem gliomas are the most common brainstem tumors associated with a poor prognosis. A small subset of these tumors is benign, showing low-grade features on histology. The role of chemotherapy in the management of these tumors is ill defined, especially in the neonates. There are anecdotal reports of spontaneous remission, but the natural history of these tumors does not support a wait-and-see approach. Thus, we report a successful experience of chemotherapy in a 4-month-old girl with a diffuse brainstem fibrillary astrocytoma, treated with vinorelbine (30 mg/m/d on days 0, 8, and 22), a vinca alkaloid that has shown activity against glioma. Our experience suggests that vinorelbine may be effective in pediatric low-grade gliomas as this patient showed significant clinical improvement over a short period of time.

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