Send to

Choose Destination
J Neurosurg. 1994 Jan;80(1):20-5.

Focal brain-stem astrocytomas causing symptoms of involvement of the facial nerve nucleus: long-term survival in six pediatric cases.

Author information

Department of Neurological Surgery (Division of Pediatric Neurosurgery and Brain Tumor Research Center), School of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco.


Six children with a history of isolated facial nerve dysfunction or dizziness and nausea were treated for brain-stem glioma between 1984 and 1992. Computerized tomography and/or magnetic resonance (MR) imaging showed a focal, uniformly enhancing mass involving the facial nerve nucleus of the pons. All patients underwent biopsy; the histological diagnosis was juvenile pilocytic astrocytoma in five cases. In the remaining case the biopsy was nondiagnostic, although the surgeon believed that the lesion was a glioma. Postoperatively, five patients underwent conventional focal megavoltage radiation therapy (180 to 200 cGy/day) over a period of 5 1/2 weeks to a total dose of approximately 5400 cGy. One child's family refused radiation therapy; she remained well and stable for 4 years, despite persistent facial weakness, and was eventually lost to follow-up review. Four irradiation-treated patients had complete resolution of their tumors on MR images and have had no evidence of neuropsychological or neuroendocrinological deficits during 4 1/2 to 8 years of follow-up evaluation. Patients whose neuroradiological studies show a lesion resembling those in this series should undergo biopsy and, if the histology of a low-grade tumor (in particular, a juvenile pilocytic astrocytoma) is confirmed, should then receive focal radiation therapy with conventional megavoltage dosages.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Atypon
Loading ...
Support Center