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Embryonal Cell Tumors: Medulloblastoma

Medulloblastoma occurs primarily in children, but it also occurs with some frequency in adults.[1] Other embryonal tumors are pediatric conditions. (Refer to the Embryonal Tumors section in the Classification section of this summary for more information. Refer to the PDQ summary on Childhood Central Nervous System Embryonal Tumors Treatment for more information.)

Standard treatment options:

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Note: Separate PDQ summaries on Endometrial Cancer Screening; Endometrial Cancer Treatment; and Uterine Sarcoma Treatment are also available. Intervention Associated With Decreased Risk Oral contraceptives Based on solid evidence, at least 1 year's use of oral contraceptives containing estrogen and progesterone decreases endometrial cancer risk, proportionate to duration of use. This benefit lasts at least 15 years after cessation.[1,2] Magnitude of Effect: Use of oral contraceptives...

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  • Surgery plus craniospinal radiation therapy for good-risk patients.[2,3,4]

Treatment options under clinical evaluation:

  • Surgery plus craniospinal radiation therapy for poor-risk patients. Various chemotherapy programs are also being evaluated.[4,5]

Current Clinical Trials

Check for U.S. clinical trials from NCI's list of cancer clinical trials that are now accepting patients with adult medulloblastoma. The list of clinical trials can be further narrowed by location, drug, intervention, and other criteria.

General information about clinical trials is also available from the NCI Web site.


  1. Brandes AA, Ermani M, Amista P, et al.: The treatment of adults with medulloblastoma: a prospective study. Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys 57 (3): 755-61, 2003.
  2. Levin VA, Vestnys PS, Edwards MS, et al.: Improvement in survival produced by sequential therapies in the treatment of recurrent medulloblastoma. Cancer 51 (8): 1364-70, 1983.
  3. Carrie C, Lasset C, Alapetite C, et al.: Multivariate analysis of prognostic factors in adult patients with medulloblastoma. Retrospective study of 156 patients. Cancer 74 (8): 2352-60, 1994.
  4. Brandes AA, Franceschi E, Tosoni A, et al.: Long-term results of a prospective study on the treatment of medulloblastoma in adults. Cancer 110 (9): 2035-41, 2007.
  5. Allen JC, Bloom J, Ertel I, et al.: Brain tumors in children: current cooperative and institutional chemotherapy trials in newly diagnosed and recurrent disease. Semin Oncol 13 (1): 110-22, 1986.

WebMD Public Information from the National Cancer Institute

Last Updated: October 07, 2011

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