Intra-axial endophytic tumors in the pons and/or medulla oblongata. I. Symptoms, neuroradiological findings, and histopathology in 30 children

Childs Nerv Syst. 1997 Mar;13(3):122-34. doi: 10.1007/s003810050058.


Between August 1987 and June 1994 we operated upon 30 consecutive children suffering from endophytic intra-axial tumors located in the pons and/or medulla oblongata. We present the clinical findings, neuroradiological aspects and histopathological results recorded in these cases. Diagnostic tests included clinical examinations, neurophysiological tests and neuroradiological imaging [magnetic resonance tomography (MRT) in all cases, often combined with cranial computer tomography (CCT)]. The diagnosis was confirmed by histopathological examination of the tumor material obtained by open surgical exploration in all cases. We conclude that a short history and more horizontal growth within the pons are more valuable predictors of the histopathology than differentiation between focal or diffuse growth patterns. MRT has little predictive value for histopathological diagnosis in intra-axial brain stem tumors.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Brain Neoplasms / complications
  • Brain Neoplasms / diagnostic imaging*
  • Brain Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Cranial Nerve Diseases / diagnosis
  • Cranial Nerve Diseases / etiology
  • Cranial Nerve Diseases / physiopathology
  • Evoked Potentials, Auditory, Brain Stem
  • Evoked Potentials, Somatosensory
  • Evoked Potentials, Visual
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Karnofsky Performance Status
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Medulla Oblongata / diagnostic imaging*
  • Medulla Oblongata / pathology*
  • Pons / diagnostic imaging*
  • Pons / pathology*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed