Researchers at the Massachusetts General Hospital across various hospital departments recently published the results of an 11-year study on the treatment of pediatric brain tumors with proton radiotherapy (PRT). The results of the study found PRT treatment to be positively associated with survival, in most cases. The study was published in the journal Neuro-Oncology.

Seventy pediatrics brain tumor patients were included in the study. All patients were treated at Massachusetts General Hospital with PRT. Doctors noted 27% of patients were diagnosed with supratentorial ependymoma and 73% were diagnosed with infratentorial ependymoma. Other the 70 patients, 66% had GTR (gross total resection) and 34% had STR (subtotal resection).

Conclusion: PRT was successful with a 95% overall survival rate. Patients with STR showed reduced survival rates of 90% compared to GTR patients. Hearing loss, growth hormone issues and/or hypothyroidism were noted in only a few cases. PTR appears to be the best treatment protocol for pediatric brain tumors (ependymoma).

Source: Macdonald SM, Sethi R, Lavally B, Yeap BY, Marcus KJ, Caruso P, Pulsifer M, Huang M, Ebb D, Tarbell NJ, Yock TI. Proton radiotherapy for pediatric central nervous system ependymoma: clinical outcomes for 70 patients. Neuro Oncol. 2013 Oct 6.

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