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Neuroblastoma Treatment (PDQ®): Treatment - Patient Information [NCI] - Treatment Options for Neuroblastoma

A link to a list of current clinical trials is included for each treatment section. For some types or stages of cancer, there may not be any trials listed. Check with your child's doctor for clinical trials that are not listed here but may be right for your child.

Low-Risk Neuroblastoma

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Treatment of low-risk neuroblastoma may include the following:

  • Watchful waiting alone for certain infants.
  • Surgery followed by watchful waiting.
  • Surgery followed by combination chemotherapy, when serious health problems occur.
  • Radiation therapy to treat tumors that are causing serious health problems and do not respond quickly to chemotherapy.

Intermediate-Risk Neuroblastoma

Treatment of intermediate-risk neuroblastoma may include the following:

  • Surgery alone.
  • Surgery followed by chemotherapy. Sometimes a second surgery is needed.
  • Watchful waiting alone for certain infants.
  • Surgery followed by chemotherapy. Radiation therapy may given to treat tumors that are causing serious health problems and do not respond quickly to surgery and chemotherapy.
  • Chemotherapy followed by surgery.
  • Radiation therapy to treat tumors that are causing serious problems and do not respond quickly to chemotherapy.

High-Risk Neuroblastoma

Treatment of high-risk neuroblastoma may include the following:

  • Combination chemotherapy followed by surgery to remove as much of the tumor as possible, followed by high-dose chemotherapy and stem cell transplant.
  • Radiation therapy to the tumor site and, sometimes, if needed, to other parts of the body with cancer.
  • 13-cis retinoic acid after recovery from previous treatment.
  • A clinical trial of new regimens of chemotherapy and radioactive iodine therapy followed by more chemotherapy, stem cell rescue, and external-beam radiation therapy.
  • A clinical trial of chemotherapy and stem cell transplant followed by 13-cis retinoic acid with or without monoclonal antibody therapy and biologic therapy.

Progressive/Recurrent Neuroblastoma

Patients with Recurrent CNS Neuroblastoma

Treatment for neuroblastoma that recurs (comes back) in the central nervous system (CNS; brain and spinal cord) may include the following:

  • Surgery to remove the tumor followed by radiation therapy.
  • Radiation therapy to the brain and spinal cord.
  • Surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy followed by targeted therapy with a radioactive substance linked to a monoclonal antibody.
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