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Childhood Central Nervous System Atypical Teratoid/Rhabdoid Tumor Treatment (PDQ®): Treatment - Patient Information [NCI] - General Information About Atypical Teratoid / Rhabdoid Tumor

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Childhood atypical teratoid/rhabdoid tumor is diagnosed and may be removed in surgery.

If doctors think there might be a brain tumor, a biopsy may be done to remove a sample of tissue. For tumors in the brain, the biopsy is done by removing part of the skull and using a needle to remove a sample of tissue. A pathologist views the tissue under a microscope to look for cancer cells. If cancer cells are found, the doctor may remove as much tumor as safely possible during the same surgery. The pathologist checks the cancer cells to find out the type of brain tumor. It is often difficult to completely remove AT/RT because of where the tumor is in the brain and because it may already have spread at the time of diagnosis.
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Craniotomy: An opening is made in the skull and a piece of the skull is removed to show part of the brain.

In order to tell the difference between AT/RT and other brain tumors, an immunohistochemistry study may be done on the sample of tissue that is removed. An immunohistochemistry study is a laboratory test in which a substance such as an antibody, dye, or radioisotope is added to a sample of cancer tissue to test for certain antigens.

Certain factors affect prognosis (chance of recovery) and treatment options.

The prognosis (chance of recovery) and treatment options depend on the following:

  • Whether there are certain inherited gene changes.
  • The age of the child.
  • The amount of tumor remaining after surgery.
  • Whether the cancer has spread to other parts of the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord) or to the kidney.
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WebMD Public Information from the National Cancer Institute

Last Updated: February 25, 2014
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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