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Brain Tumors

Nemours Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders in the Delaware Valley and Florida

Locations & Doctors Who Treat Brain Tumors

 
Delaware

Wilmington

Nemours/Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children

1600 Rockland Road
Wilmington, DE 19803
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For Appointments: (800) 416-4441

Doctors Who Treat Brain Tumors at This Location

 
New Jersey

Voorhees

Nemours duPont Pediatrics, Voorhees

443 Laurel Oak Road
Therapy Services (Suite 200)
Pediatric Specialty Services (Suite 230)
Voorhees, NJ 08043
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For Appointments: (800) 416-4441

Hours: Fourth Friday each month; 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
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Doctors Who Treat Brain Tumors at This Location

 
Pennsylvania

Philadelphia

Nemours duPont Pediatrics, Philadelphia

833 Chestnut St. E., Suite 300
Philadelphia, PA 19107
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For Appointments: (800) 416-4441

Hours: Monday–Friday: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
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Doctors Who Treat Brain Tumors at This Location


Lancaster

Nemours duPont Pediatrics, Lancaster

2128 Embassy Drive, Suite A
Lancaster, PA 17603
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For Appointments: (800) 416-4441

Hours: Hours vary; please call
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Doctors Who Treat Brain Tumors at This Location

 
Florida

Orlando

Nemours Children's Hospital, Orlando

13535 Nemours Parkway
Orlando, FL 32827
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For Appointments: (407) 650-7715

Doctors Who Treat Brain Tumors at This Location


Nemours Children's Specialty Care, Orlando

1717 S. Orange Ave.
Orlando, FL 32806
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For Appointments: (407) 650-7715

Hours: Monday–Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
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Doctors Who Treat Brain Tumors at This Location

To find out which providers serve this location, please call the main number above.

Melbourne

Nemours Children's Specialty Care, Melbourne

1270 N. Wickham Road
Melbourne, FL 32935
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For Appointments: (407) 650-7715

Hours: Monday–Friday: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
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Doctors Who Treat Brain Tumors at This Location


Jacksonville

Nemours Children's Specialty Care, Jacksonville

807 Children’s Way
Jacksonville, FL 32207
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For Appointments: (904) 697-3789

Hours: Monday–Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
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Doctors Who Treat Brain Tumors at This Location


Pensacola

Nemours Children's Specialty Care, Pensacola

5153 N. Ninth Ave.
Pensacola, FL 32504
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For Appointments: (850) 505-4790

Hours: Monday–Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Central Time)
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Doctors Who Treat Brain Tumors at This Location

About Brain Tumors

Olivia was diagnosed with medulloblastoma when she was 3 years old.

By definition, brain tumors are masses of abnormal cells and can be malignant (cancerous) or benign (noncancerous). Primary brain tumors start in the brain or spinal cord and may form randomly (due to unknown cause), or form as the result of inherited DNA. Not all brain tumors in children are malignant, however benign tumors can still be worrisome depending on the size and where they are in the brain.

Tumors of the brain and spinal cord (which together comprise the central nervous system, or CNS) are the second most common solid tumors in children and can occur at any age. About 4,000 CNS tumors are diagnosed in the United States each year.

If you’ve just learned your child may have a brain tumor, we know you want the best care possible. At the Nemours Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders, a Children’s Oncology Group (COG) member institution, our renowned oncologists (cancer doctors), neurologists, neuro-oncologists and researchers work together to diagnose and treat all types of pediatric brain and spinal cord tumors.


Types of Childhood Brain Tumors We Treat

 
Gliomas

“Gliomas” refers to a group of tumors that typically begin in glial cells in the brain or spinal cord. Gliomas are the most common primary brain tumor. Gliomas are classified as “high,” “intermediate” and “low-grade,” depending on the pathology (that is, what the cells look like). The higher the grade, the faster they grow. These tumors (which rarely spread outside the brain and spinal cord) are named after the glial cells they affect, or their location.

Gliomas include:
  • astrocytomas (the most common type, develops in the brain’s connective tissue cells)
  • brain stem gliomas (form in the brain stem, also called focal brain stem tumors)
  • oligodendrogliomas (develop in the brain’s supportive tissue cells)
  • ependymomas (start in the ventricles or central canal of the spinal cord)
  • mixed gliomas (develop from more than one glial cell)
  • optic nerve gliomas (begin in the optic nerve which sends signals to the brain about what the eye sees)
 
Medulloblastomas

Medulloblastomas are malignant brain tumors that represent around 15 to 20 percent of all brain tumors diagnosed in children. Starting in the cerebellum (the part of the brain that controls balance and coordination), medulloblastomas are formed from immature (not yet developed) cells and are most common in children of elementary school age. Symptoms of medulloblastoma in children start with increasing pressure in the skull and trouble with coordination and walking. Medulloblastoma can spread through the spinal cord to other parts of the body. 

 
Other Types of Pediatric Brain & Spinal Cord Tumors We Treat
  • choroid plexus tumors (rare tumors that are most often benign, begin in the ventricles of the brain) 
  • craniopharyngiomas (slow-growing tumors that begin in the pituitary gland just below the brain)
  • germ cell tumors (tumors formed by germ cells that arise in the middle of the brain next to the pituitary and pineal glands)
  • neurilemmomas (also called “schwannomas,” are rare benign tumors that commonly form on the cranial nerve responsible for balance and hearing)
  • meningiomas (usually benign tumors that begin in the meninges — the tissue that forms an outer protective layer of the brain)
  • neurofibromas (tumors that start in the nerves close to the surface of the skin)

Diagnosing Brain Tumors in Children

Signs & Symptoms of Brain Tumors

Signs and symptoms of brain tumors in children can also indicate other less serious conditions and can include:

  • headache
  • nausea and vomiting
  • fatigue
  • seizures
  • slurred speech
  • memory problems
  • trouble walking or with coordination
  • breathing problems
  • irritability
  • personality changes

Testing & Evaluations

If your child has a possible brain tumor, Nemours’ experienced cancer care team works together to appropriately diagnose and stage the disease through a variety of tests and procedures, including:

  • thorough physical examination and medical history
  • biopsy (via surgery or minimally invasive interventional radiology)
  • blood tests 
  • lumbar puncture (spinal tap)
  • medical imaging 

Treating & Caring for Children With Brain Tumors

Comprehensive Brain Tumors Care for Your Child

If we discover a brain tumor, our multidisciplinary (collaborative) team plans the most effective treatment personalized to your child’s needs. 

In addition to an experienced, compassionate cancer coordinator (a nurse who provides your child and family support, education and care coordination), Nemours’ pediatric brain cancer teams may include a number of different providers.

  • oncologists (cancer specialists)
  • neuro-oncologists (neurologists who specialize in brain cancer)
  • neurologists (specialists in brain and spinal cord disorders)
  • surgeons (general surgeons and neurosurgeons) 
  • pathologists (diagnose diseases by examining body tissues, fluids and organs)
  • geneticists (perform genetic counseling and testing)
  • chemotherapists (specialists in chemotherapy treatment)
  • radiologists (diagnose diseases through medical imaging)
  • radiation oncologists (specialists in radiation therapy treatment)
  • interventional radiologists (perform image-guided minimally-invasive procedures)
  • behavioral health specialists (psychologists and psychiatrists)
  • registered dieticians (nutrition specialists)
  • nurse oncologists (registered nurses specializing in cancer)  

What’s more, many of our patients get the benefit of our “tumor board” — a group of top pediatric physicians and scientists representing various specialties who meet every week to discuss children with complex cancer cases. It’s like getting a second opinion without making an appointment.

Your care team is here to provide your family with ongoing support and follow-up. We always include you in the entire process, because we truly believe in the healing power of families, and that you know your child best. 

Learn More About Pediatric Oncology and Hematology Cancer Care Teams in Your Area »


Innovative Childhood Brain Tumor Treatment at Nemours

The combined Nemours Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders involves four main locations — Wilmington, Del., Jacksonville, Fla., Orlando, Fla. and Pensacola, Fla. — all of which are active members of the Children’s Oncology Group (or “COG,” an organization committed to pediatric cancer research). We’re also affiliated with some of the world’s leaders in pediatric oncology and hematology treatment and research, working to discover new treatments and cures for all children, even those who may never enter our doors.   

Treating pediatric brain tumors depends on age, overall health, extent of the disease and other factors. Nemours offers advanced and innovative childhood cancer treatments and approaches (called “modalities”) not available at other children’s cancer centers.

We may use one or a combination of modalities that include:
  • chemotherapy (cancer-killing medicines)
  • proton therapy (advanced radiation therapy) 
  • radiation therapy (including intensity-modulated radiation therapy, or “IMRT”)
  • surgery (craniotomy and ventriculoperitoneal, or VP shunt)
  • targeted drug therapies (targets genetic abnormalities)

For your child’s overall health and wellness, we also prescribe physical medicine and rehabilitation services, pain management services, palliative and supportive care (to manage physical symptoms resulting from the disease or surgery) and integrative medicine therapies (massage, aqua therapy, biofeedback, yoga, meditation and more). 

Learn More About Pediatric Cancer Treatment at Nemours »

Additional Resources & Support for Families

 
Nemours Support Services

Nemours provides an array of support services to help your child and family throughout the entire journey. Our supportive care begins on the very first day we meet, and continues beyond treatment because at Nemours, your child and family become part of our own.

Our services include: 
  • patient and family education
  • social work
  • mental health counseling
  • Child Life services
  • creative therapy
  • support groups
 
Trusted National Brain Tumor Resources

Children’s Brain Tumor Foundation: The foundation seeks to improve the treatment, quality of life and the long-term outlook for children with brain and spinal cord tumors through research, support, education and advocacy to families and survivors.

Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation: The foundation works to eliminate the challenges of childhood brain tumors, and maintains information on cancers, resources and research.

 
General Cancer Information & Education

American Cancer Society: The society provides programs and services, and raises funds for research and support programs. On the site, you can find information about cancer, treatments and research, and resources for support.

Cancer.Net: Get oncologist-approved information about cancer and types of cancer from the American Society of Clinical Oncology.

National Cancer Institute: The National Cancer Institute is part of the National Institutes of Health and is the federal government's principal agency for cancer research and training. On this site, visitors can learn more about cancer and the types of cancer, and get cancer-related information.

National Institutes of Health: The institute provides a vast amount of information on diseases, treatments and research, including the informative site, Medline Plus.

The Children's Oncology Group Family Handbook 2nd Edition (PDF): This book provides families with reliable information about treatment, support and follow-up care for children and young people with cancer. 

Appointments & Referrals

Delaware, Pennsylvania & New Jersey

(800) 416-4441


Florida
Jacksonville Area

(904) 697-3789

Orlando Area

(407) 650-7715

Pensacola Area

(850) 505-4790

Learn About Our Locations »


International
Patients

+1 (302) 651-4993

Our Goal: A Better Tomorrow

At the Nemours Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders, we strive to maximize every child's quality of life — today and for many tomorrows. Watch Video »

Top-Notch Cancer Research

We bring the latest scientific advances from the laboratory bench to the bedside to improve care and strive for a cure. Watch Video »