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Cancer. 1980 Jun 1;45(11):2787-92.

Pediatric brain stem gliomas.


Sixty-two pediatric patients with brain stem glioma diagnosed between 1964 and 1978 have been reviewed. Posterior fossa eploration was performed on 53% of the patients. Pathology was obtained by biopsy in 58% of those explored. Fifty-four patients had definitive radiation therapy with a median dose of 5000 rads. The actuarial five-year survival for the entire group is 30%. A pathologic diagnosis was available from necropsy or biopsy on 36 of the 62 patients. One-half had malignant tumors, and none survived more than 16 months. The remaining patients with well-differentiated gliomas had five-year actuarial survival of 55%. The use of computed tomography (CT) has been found to be valuable in diagnosis and follow-up, as well as in the design of radiation therapy portals. The data demonstrate no dose response curve. We recommend local radiation therapy of 5000 to 5500 rads to the tumor area as defined by CT.

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