Craniopharyngioma: Modern concepts in pathogenesis and treatment

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PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Craniopharyngioma is a benign tumour. Its tendency to recur after excision and the high surgical risk due to involvement of the most vital structures of the brain mean that alternatives to radical surgery should be considered, namely limited surgical procedures followed by radiotherapy. Since both options present inherent risks, optimal craniopharyngioma treatment remains controversial. This paper aims to critically review the recent literature on craniopharyngioma. RECENT FINDINGS: The management of children with craniopharyngioma has benefited from concerted efforts by national and international groups to improve outcome and reduce morbidity. From the current literature it is evident that there is a trend to better integrate all treatment modalities available, tailoring therapies to specific risk factors. Modern imaging and new surgical and radiotherapy techniques are increasing the possibility of cure. Biological markers are under investigation and this will increase our knowledge on craniopharyngioma. SUMMARY: Studies on treatment, biology and pathogenesis of craniopharyngioma, available in the current literature, grew considerably in the last year. Although a consensus has not been reached on all aspects of this complex disease, there is a trend in the field to move quickly towards a better understanding of the disease to improve treatment strategies and to produce clinical cooperative trials.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)471-479
Number of pages9
JournalCurrent Opinion in Pediatrics
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2007


  • Children
  • Craniopharyngioma
  • Multidisciplinary approach
  • Pathogenesis
  • Quality of life

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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