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J Clin Oncol. 1988 Dec;6(12):1874-81.

International criteria for diagnosis, staging, and response to treatment in patients with neuroblastoma.

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  • 1Department of Pediatrics, Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO 63110.


Neuroblastoma is one of the most common tumors in childhood. However, it often has been difficult to compare clinical and laboratory studies of this disease due to a lack of uniform criteria for diagnosis, staging, and response. An international group of conferees addressed each of these issues and reached a consensus. Specific criteria for making a diagnosis of neuroblastoma are defined. A new neuroblastoma staging system is proposed that takes into account the most important elements of current but incompatible systems. Finally, criteria for response to treatment are standardized. The criteria proposed herein represent an international consensus of essentially every major pediatric oncology group or organization in the United States, Europe, and Japan. The staging system should be referred to as the International Neuroblastoma Staging System, and the response criteria as the International Neuroblastoma Response Criteria. Implementation of these criteria will greatly facilitate the comparison of clinical and laboratory studies by different groups and countries. Furthermore, these criteria should serve as a foundation on which future modifications or improvements can be based.

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