Located in Boston, Massachusetts, Dana-Farber/Boston Children's Cancer and Blood Disorders Center has the world’s largest low-grade Glioma Treatment Program. Ongoing research on the genetic and molecular causes of the disease is transferred to the bedside, where some of the world’s most most experienced pediatric brain tumor specialists and pediatric subspecialists use sophisticated technology and therapies to maximize outcomes for our patients.
The Dana-Farber/Boston Children's Glioma Treatment Program has the expertise to diagnose and treat a wide range of low- and high-grade gliomas, including:
Initially, low-grade gliomas are treated with neurosurgery and monitored for regrowth. If surgical removal is not an option due to the tumor’s location or if the tumor begins to grow back after its removal, our doctors may recommend chemotherapy or biologic therapy. Radiation therapy is rarely used to treat these tumors because of the high risk of adverse side effects and the overall excellent prognosis without radiation.
Most high-grade gliomas need to undergo maximal surgical resection. Technologies like intra-operative MRI allow our surgeons to visualize the tumor as they operate, enhancing their ability to successfully remove the tumor without damaging criticial parts of the brain. Following surgery, precisely targeted doses of radiation therapy are delivered to kill cancer cells left behind.
Dana-Farber/Boston Children's patients have access to the broadest set of pediatric and oncologic expertise available. The breadth of our expertise allows us to assemble a team of experts to meet the specific needs of the patient.
At the core of the treatment team is a neuro-oncologist with expertise in treating gliomas. Many of our brain tumor specialists are also active researchers, so our patients have access to the very best and up-to-date treatments available.
From there, we build a team that is best suited to carry out the patient’s treatment plan, including neurologists, neurosurgeons, radiation oncologists, and radiologists.
We round out the team with experts that help the child prepare for life during and after treatment, including psychiatrists and psychologists, child life specialists, social workers, nutritionists, and school specialists.