Relapsed or Refractory Neuroblastoma
Also known as: Neuroblastoma relapse, secondary cancer.
What is relapsed or refractory neuroblastoma?
Neuroblastoma is the most common solid cancerous tumor found outside the brain in children. It develops from nerve cells in the adrenal gland or from nerves in the neck, chest or pelvis that control voluntary body functions (sympathetic nervous system). In some cases, the neuroblastoma can return after treatment. This is known as relapsed neuroblastoma. If the tumor doesn’t resolve with treatment, it is known as refractory neuroblastoma. They are often treated in a similar fashion.
What causes relapsed or refractory neuroblastoma?
Researchers aren’t exactly sure why neuroblastoma relapses or doesn’t respond to treatment in some children. It’s possible that not all of the cancer cells are killed with the initial treatment, or that some of them become resistant to the treatment during therapy.
What are the signs/symptoms of relapsed or refractory neuroblastoma?
Depending on site and size of the primary tumor and where it has spread (metastasized) signs and symptoms will vary. These can include; enlarged lymph nodes in the neck, a swollen abdomen, an abdominal mass, bruising, unexplained fever, weakness or paralysis, bone pain, weight loss, poor appetite and other symptoms.
What are relapsed or refractory neuroblastoma care options?
A number of factors contribute to treatment decisions, however chemotherapy, immunotherapy, radiotherapy, surgery, stem cell transplantation and a special kind of treatment known as MIBG therapy (MIBG is a molecule that is absorbed by neuroblastoma cells to which radioactive iodine is added), may all be used to treat advanced neuroblastoma.
Reviewed by: Jack Wolfsdorf, MD, FAAP
This page was last updated on: 5/24/2018 9:38:49 AM
The Nicklaus Children’s Cancer & Blood Disorders Center, together with the Brain Institute is proud to host this free event designed to deliver education, support and guidance for children diagnosed with brain tumors and their caregivers. Learn more.
In this edition of Talkin' Kids Health we will discuss cancer effects and the survivorship program at Nicklaus Children's with Dr. Haneen Abdella, Pediaric Oncolgoist at Nicklaus Children's and Kristen Mendez, ARNP and Manager of the Survivorship Program. Learn more.
From the Newsdesk
Children with SCD may present anemia, repeated infections, and shortness of breath.
Children with Leukemia can have different oral manifestations.