medical notes

Apr 17th, 2015
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Posterior Fossa TumorsTumors in the posterior fossa are considered some of the most critical brain lesions. This is due primarily to the limited space within the posterior fossa, as well as the potential involvement of the vital brain stem nuclei. Some patients should undergo operation on an emergency basis, especially if they present with acute symptoms of brain stem involvement or herniation. Occurrence Posterior fossa tumors are more common in children than the adult populations. Between 54% and 70% of all childhood brain tumors originate in the posterior fossa. About 15-20% of brain tumors in adults occur in the posterior fossa. Certain types of posterior fossa tumors, such as medulloblastoma, pineoblastoma, ependymomas, primitive neuroectodermal tumors (PNETs), and astrocytomas of the cerebellum and brain stem, occur more frequently in children. Etiology: No specific causes for posterior fossa tumors exist. However, genetic factors, such as dysfunction of some tumor suppressor genes (p53 gene) and activation of some oncogenes, may play a role in their developmentPathophysiology: Common types of posterior fossa tumors include the following: Cerebellar astrocytoma Cystic cerebellar astrocytoma comprises about 33% of all posterior fossa tumors in children. It represents 25% of all pediatric tumors. Average age of presentation is 9 years. Typically, cerebellar astrocytoma presents as a laterally located cyst with a well-defined solid component. It may be sol

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