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Brain Tumors in Children

Medically reviewed by Last updated on May 6, 2024.

What is a brain tumor?

A brain tumor is a mass that grows in your child's brain, or in an area near the brain. Examples include nerves in your child's skull, his or her pituitary gland, or the membranes that cover the brain. The tumor may start in your child's brain or travel to his or her brain from another body area. There are many kinds of brain tumors. Each kind is named for where it begins and what it does in the brain. A tumor may be malignant (cancer), or benign (not cancer). It may grow quickly or slowly.

Brain Anatomy

What causes or increases my child's risk for a brain tumor?

What are the signs and symptoms of a brain tumor?

Signs and symptoms will depend on the kind of tumor your child has, and where it is in the brain. In children, tumors usually start in a part of the brain that controls movement and coordination. Your child may have any of the following:

How is a brain tumor diagnosed?

Your healthcare provider will examine your child and ask about his or her symptoms. Tell the provider if your child has ever had cancer, and what kind he or she had. Tell the provider if your child has a family history of brain tumors or cancer. Your child may need any of the following:

How is a brain tumor treated?

Treatment will depend on the type of tumor your child has and where it is located. Your child's age and health will also help guide treatment. Your child may need any of the following:

Treatment options

The following list of medications are related to or used in the treatment of this condition.

View more treatment options

What can I do to manage my child's symptoms?

Where can I find support and more information?

Call 911 if:

When should I seek immediate care?

When should I contact my child's healthcare provider?

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your child's care. Learn about your child's health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your child's healthcare providers to decide what care you want for your child. The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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Learn more about Brain Tumors

Treatment options

Care guides

Symptoms and treatments

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.