Juvenile Pilocytic Astrocytoma

National Organization for Rare Disorders, Inc.

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Important
It is possible that the main title of the report Juvenile Pilocytic Astrocytoma is not the name you expected.

Disorder Subdivisions

  • None

General Discussion

Juvenile pilocytic astrocytoma (JPA) is a rare childhood brain tumor. In most cases, the tumor is a benign, slow growing tumor that usually does not spread to surrounding brain tissue. Symptoms of a JPA will vary depending upon the size and location of the tumor. Most symptoms result from increased pressure on the brain and include headaches, nausea, vomiting, balance problems and vision abnormalities.

A JPA develops from certain star-shaped brain cells called astrocytes. Astrocytes and similar cells form tissue that surrounds and protects other nerve cells found within the brain and spinal cord. Collectively, these cells are known as glial cells and the tissue they form is known as glial tissue. Tumors that arise from glial tissue, including astrocytomas, are collectively referred to as gliomas.

Astrocytomas are classified according to a grading system developed by the World Health Organization (WHO). Astrocytomas come in four grades based upon how fast the cells are reproducing and that likelihood that they will spread (infiltrate) nearby tissue. Grades I or II astrocytomas are nonmalignant and may be referred to as low-grade. JPA are Grade I tumors and, unlike the low grade astrocytomas of adults, rarely up-grade and become malignant. Grades III and IV astrocytomas are malignant and may be referred to as high-grade astrocytomas. Anaplastic astrocytomas are grade III astrocytomas. Grade IV astrocytomas are known as glioblastoma multiforme.

Supporting Organizations

American Brain Tumor Association

8550 W. Bryn Mawr Avenue, Suite 550
Chicago, IL 60631
USA
Tel: (773)577-8750
Fax: (773)577-8738
Tel: (800)886-2282
Email: info@abta.org
Website: http://www.abta.org

American Cancer Society, Inc.

250 Williams NW St
Ste 6000
Atlanta, GA 30303
USA
Tel: (404)320-3333
Tel: (800)227-2345
Website: http://www.cancer.org

American Childhood Cancer Organization

10920 Connecticut Ave
Suite A
Kensington, MD 20895
Tel: (301)962-3520
Fax: (301)962-3521
Tel: (800)366-2223
Email: staff@acco.org
Website: http://www.acco.org

Brain Tumor Foundation for Children, Inc.

6065 Roswell Road Suite 505
Atlanta, GA 30328-4015
USA
Tel: (404)252-4107
Fax: (404)252-4108
Email: info@braintumorkids.org
Website: http://www.braintumorkids.org

Cancer Support Community

1050 17th St NW Suite 500
Washington, DC 20036
Tel: (202)659-9709
Fax: (202)974-7999
Tel: (888)793-9355
Website: http://www.cancersupportcommunity.org/

Children's Brain Tumor Foundation

274 Madison Avenue, Suite 1004
New York, NY 10016
United States
Tel: (212)448-1595
Fax: (212)448-1022
Tel: (866)228-4673
Email: info@cbtf.org
Website: http://www.cbtf.org

Genetic and Rare Diseases (GARD) Information Center

PO Box 8126
Gaithersburg, MD 20898-8126
Tel: (301)251-4925
Fax: (301)251-4911
Tel: (888)205-2311
Website: http://rarediseases.info.nih.gov/GARD/

Livestrong Foundation

2201 E. Sixth Street
Austin, TX 78702
Tel: (512)236-8820
Fax: (512)236-8482
Tel: (877)236-8820
Email: media@livestrong.org
Website: http://www.livestrong.org

National Brain Tumor Society

55 Chapel Street
Suite 200
Newton, MA 02458
Tel: (617)924-9997
Fax: (617)924-9998
Tel: (800) 770-8287
Email: info@braintumor.org
Website: http://www.braintumor.org

National Cancer Institute

6116 Executive Blvd Suite 300
Bethesda, MD 20892-8322
USA
Tel: (301)435-3848
Tel: (800)422-6237
Email: cancergovstaff@mail.nih.gov
Website: http://www.cancer.gov

PLGA Foundation

98 Random Farms Drive
Chappaqua, NY 10514
Email: contact@fightplga.org
Website: http://www.fightplga.org/

Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation

302 Ridgefield Court
Asheville, NC 28806
Tel: (828)665-6891
Fax: (828)665-6894
Tel: (800)253-6530
Email: pbtfus@pbtfus.org
Website: http://www.pbtfus.org

Rare Cancer Alliance

1649 North Pacana Way
Green Valley, AZ 85614
USA
Website: http://www.rare-cancer.org

For a Complete Report

This is an abstract of a report from the National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD). For a full-text version of this report, go to www.rarediseases.org and click on Rare Disease Database under "Rare Disease Information".

The information provided in this report is not intended for diagnostic purposes. It is provided for informational purposes only.

It is possible that the title of this topic is not the name you selected. Please check the Synonyms listing to find the alternate name(s) and Disorder Subdivision(s) covered by this report.

This disease entry is based upon medical information available through the date at the end of the topic. Since NORD's resources are limited, it is not possible to keep every entry in the Rare Disease Database completely current and accurate. Please check with the agencies listed in the Resources section for the most current information about this disorder.

Last Updated:  10/22/2007
Copyright  2007 National Organization for Rare Disorders, Inc.