The goal of surgery for a juvenile pilocytic astrocytoma is to remove as much of the tumor as possible without damaging nearby structures or causing neurological damage.
The surgery may be open surgery, in which a neurosurgeon removes a portion of the skull to gain access to the tumor, or a less invasive endoscopic surgery, in which the surgeon approaches the tumor through the nose. Neurosurgeons with advanced training in endoscopic techniques are best qualified to perform these procedures. If the tumor can be completely removed, the chances of a complete cure are very good. The patient will have ongoing MRI scans to ensure that the tumor does not regrow.
A juvenile pilocytic astrocytoma may be a benign tumor, but as with any pediatric brain tumor it is best treated at a major medical center by a neurosurgeon with advanced skills and experience in treating children with brain tumors (See Doctors Who Treat Juvenile Pilocytic Astrocytomas).
Reviewed by: Jeffrey Greenfield, Ph.D., M.D.
Last reviewed/last updated: April 2021
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