Central nervous system (CNS) malignancies contribute significantly to the global burden of cancer. Brain tumors constitute the most common solid organ tumors in children and the second most common malignancies of childhood overall. Accounting for nearly 20% of all pediatric malignancies, these are the foremost cause of cancer-related deaths in children 0–14 years of age. This book chapter provides a state-of-the-art overview of pediatric brain tumors. It discusses their morbidity and mortality and introduces the WHO 2021 classification of CNS tumors, which is critical to therapeutic decision-making. It then describes the modern understanding of tumor grading and its clinical implications, followed by the general principles of diagnosis and management. The chapter then discusses, in detail, those brain tumors which have the highest disease burden in children, including medulloblastoma, astrocytoma, ependymoma, schwannoma, meningioma, amongst others. The landscape of treatment of pediatric brain tumors has been rapidly evolving, with several effective therapies on the horizon.
Part of the book: Central Nervous System Tumors