Ependymoma - Childhood: Overview

Approved by the Cancer.Net Editorial Board, 11/2015

ON THIS PAGE: You will find some basic information about this disease and the parts of the body it may affect. This is the first page of Cancer.Net’s Guide to Childhood Ependymoma. To see other pages, use the menu on the side of your screen. Think of that menu as a roadmap to this full guide.

Childhood ependymoma is a type of brain tumor. A tumor begins when healthy cells change and grow uncontrollably, forming a mass. A tumor can be cancerous or benign. A cancerous tumor is malignant, meaning it can grow and spread to other parts of the body. A benign tumor means the tumor can grow but will not spread. Ependymoma is a rare, cancerous brain tumor.

Ependymoma starts from radial glial cells, which are a type of cell in the brain. Even though ependymoma can occur in any part of the brain or spine, it most commonly occurs in the cerebellum. The brain and spinal column make up the central nervous system (CNS), where all vital functions are controlled, including thought, speech, and body strength. The cerebellum is the part of the brain that coordinates the body’s actions.

This section covers ependymoma diagnosed in children. Learn more about brain tumors in adults.

Looking for More of an Overview?

If you would like additional introductory information, explore this related item. Please note this link will take you to another section on Cancer.Net:

The next section in this guide is Statistics and it helps explain how many children are diagnosed with this disease and general survival rates. Or, use the menu on the side of your screen to choose another section to continue reading this guide.