How well a patient responds to treatment is affected by their age at the time of diagnosis; the size and extent of the tumor; the amount of mass that can be removed safely; and the level of metastatic disease (the M stage). Overall, the Central Brain Tumor Registry of the United States reports about 65% – 70% of adults (age 20+) with medulloblastoma are alive at 5 years following diagnosis. It is important to realize these statistics do not reflect differences in outcome between low risk and high risks groups (since high risk groups may not do as well), differences in patient characteristics, nor differences between patient responses to treatment.
With current therapies, 70% – 80% of children with average-risk medulloblastoma can be expected to be alive and free of disease five years from diagnosis. Even in those children with highrisk disease, effective therapy is possible and results in long-term disease control in as high as 60% – 65% of patients. Outcome for infants is poorer, but for those infants with localized disease at the time of diagnosis, survival rates in the 30% – 50% range are being seen.
Take the opportunity to speak with the healthcare team treating you or your child to learn how these statistics apply to your individual situation.
Medulloblastoma patients have a significantly increased chance of survival, thanks to improved treatment techniques. The best results, however, occur when patients are cared for by an experienced multi-disciplinary team of medical professionals at an established pediatric or adult cancer center.