About the Brain Tumor Program
Established in 1993, the Brain Tumor Program at Texas Children’s Cancer Center is one of the largest of its type in the country, focused on children and adolescents.
We treat approximately 140 new pediatric brain tumor patients each year from all over the world, many of whom cannot be treated anywhere else.
Brain tumors are the most common type of solid tumors in children, but that doesn’t make it any easier when this diagnosis is first made. Fortunately, the Brain Tumor Program at Texas Children’s Cancer Center is here to help.
Many physicians at Texas Children’s Cancer Center contribute to the care of a child with a brain tumor. Neurosurgeons, medical and radiation oncologists, neuroradiologists, neuropathologists and neurologists discuss each newly diagnosed patient at a weekly conference in order to provide the most appropriate care for each child. Nurse practitioners, nurses, physical and rehabilitation personnel, neuropsychologists, endocrinologists, ophthalmologists, social workers and others work closely with the physicians as a team so that all aspects of care for a particular child and the family are addressed.
We use the most modern diagnostic neuro-imaging modalities and innovative technologies such as functional magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and spectroscopy. We also use state-of-the-art microscopes and technology to pinpoint patient tumors.
The Texas Children’s Cancer Center Brain Tumor Program offers comprehensive support services for the entire family because we believe that caring for the psychosocial and emotional needs of a patient and family are just as important as the medical care they receive. These services include patient, parent and sibling support groups, psychosocial and pastoral support, and access to teen retreats, recreational camps and education/learning support programs.
Our Cancer Genetics and Genomics Program specialists investigate any hereditary causes for the development of cancer and counsels families accordingly.
The Brain Tumor Program is seamlessly joined with our Long Term Survivor Program, which is staffed by experienced physicians who continue to monitor children treated for a brain tumor long after the treatments were completed.
Innovative protocols and therapies
The Texas Children’s Cancer Center Brain Tumor Program provides cutting-edge treatment for children with all types and stages of brain tumors. The Brain Tumor Program develops and participates in national and international research studies and clinical trials, allowing us to treat our patients with the latest and most innovative therapies.
Our investigators are leaders in the development of new drugs, sophisticated radiotherapy approaches and the application of other novel approaches to brain tumor therapy. The Texas Children’s Cancer Center Developmental Therapeutics Program, one of the best in the country, actively investigates new agents and provides guidance to our physicians and families on the use of novel brain tumor therapies.
We have also embarked on an exciting and innovative journey involving the development of personalized medicine based on genome sequencing of each patient’s tumor. This will enable us to deliver targeted therapies unique to the individual patient with the potential for greater efficacy and lessened side effects. We are a founding member and one of only 10 sites of the Pediatric Brain Tumor Consortium (PBTC). In addition, we are a member of the Children’s Oncology Group (COG) and as have access to innovative experimental protocols through the COG Phase I Consortium.