Childhood central nervous system (CNS) embryonal tumors are masses of rapidly growing cells that begin in embryonic (fetal) tissue in the brain and spinal cord. While CNS embryonal tumors can be malignant or benign, most childhood CNS embryonal tumors are malignant.
The PDQ® Childhood Central Nervous System Embryonal Tumors Treatment cancer information summary discusses the treatment of the following tumor types:
- Large cell
- Primitive neuroectodermal tumor (PNET)
- CNS neuroblastoma
- CNS ganglioneuroblastoma
- Pineal parenchymal tumors of intermediate differentiation*
- CNS atypical teratoid/rhabdoid tumors**
*Pineoblastoma and pineal parenchymal tumors of intermediate differentiation are brain tumors that occur in or around the pineal gland, a tiny organ near the center of the brain. These CNS embryonal tumors are classified separately by the World Health Organization, but are currently treated like other childhood CNS embryonal tumors.
**Childhood CNS atypical teratoid/rhabdoid tumors are also considered childhood CNS embryonal tumors, but are treated differently than other childhood CNS embryonal tumors. For more information about the treatment of these tumors, refer to the PDQ summary, Childhood Central Nervous System Atypical Teratoid/Rhabdoid Tumor Treatment.