Intramedullary astrocytomas and ependymomas in the pediatric age group: A retrospective study

Gualtiero Innocenzi, Antonino Raco, Giampaolo Cantore, Anthony J. Raimondi

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A series of 45 pediatric patients underwent surgery for intramedullary astrocytoma or ependymoma at the Cook County Hospital or the Children's Memorial Hospital of Chicago (Northwestern University) and the Neurosurgical Department of Rome 'La Sapienza' University. Results showed that intramedullary astrocytomas and ependymomas in children differ from one another in terms of prognosis, and particularly as regards surgical strategy as an element of therapeutic management. Gross total removal of 70% of the ependymomas was achieved, in comparison to 33% of the astrocytomas. In astrocytomas the extent of resection did not significantly influence prognosis. Neurological condition on admission, regardless of oncotype, was found to be extremely influential: patients operated in good condition tended to remain neurologically stable or improve in the long term, while those operated on while in poor condition did not show any improvement at all. No definitive conclusions were possible regarding the value of radiotherapy, because it was only performed in 6 of the 45 cases. The authors limited its use to highly malignant lesions in view of the well-known sensitivity of the spinal cord to radiation, especially in children.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)776-780
Number of pages5
JournalChild's Nervous System
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1996


  • Childhood
  • Intramedullary astrocytoma
  • Intramedullary ependymoma
  • Prognosis
  • Treatment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Clinical Neurology


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