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Home / Health / Two young siblings diagnosed with brain tumor only weeks apart, what is medulloblastoma?

Two young siblings diagnosed with brain tumor only weeks apart, what is medulloblastoma?



The young siblings Kalea and Noah Avery were both diagnosed with medulloblastoma brain tumors just weeks apart. Most patients of the disease are infants under the age of 16 years. ( Pixabay )

Two siblings, ages four and six, were diagnosed with the same type of brain tumor every two weeks. What they have is the most common form of childhood malignant brain tumor.

Sibling Diagnosis

At the end of May, six-year-old Kalea Avery had a headache and had a headache the same week. When she was taken to the emergency room, doctors discovered a mass in her brain that turned out to be medulloblastoma, a fairly aggressive tumor in the cerebellum.

In June, just a week after Doctors diagnosed Kalea and her tumor surgery, her 4-year-old brother Noah splashed, began to run weird, complaining of pain in the same spot where Kalea had previously complained of pain. On June 21

, an MRI showed that Noah also had an even bigger brain tumor in the same place as his sister, and he too was diagnosed with medulloblastoma.

What is Medulloblastoma

Medulloblastoma is the most common form of malignant brain tumor in children, accounting for about 20 percent of all brain tumors. It is a cancerous type of tumor that begins in the region of the brain that is at the base of the skull.

It is a condition that is slightly more common in boys than in girls and often in children younger than 16 years old. Every year, 250 to 500 children are diagnosed with medulloblastoma, and although rare, it can also occur in adults.

Symptoms include headache, awkwardness, vomiting, and nausea, which gradually worsen and have handwriting problems. However, if the tumor has spread to the spinal cord, the patient may also have difficulty walking, bladder and bowel control problems, and back pain. Often, surgery to remove the affected brain mass is the very first step in treating the medulloblastoma, followed by radiotherapy and chemotherapy to remove the remaining tumor cells.

The survival rates of patients with medulloblastoma vary depending on the age of the patient, the degree to which the tumor has spread. A patient may have 70 to 80 percent survival if the tumor has not spread and 60 percent if it has spread to the spinal cord. Often, children under the age of three who are diagnosed with medulloblastoma have lower survival rates as the disease tends to be more aggressive.

Twins Diagnosis

In the case of Kalea and Noah, doctors were surprised that the siblings were diagnosed with the same type of brain tumor within just a few days of each other. In fact, even if there are rare cases of siblings developing the same type of brain tumor, they do not occur simultaneously.

According to doctors, tumors are not likely to be triggered by an environmental factor, and it is more likely that the family has genes that make them more susceptible to the development of brain tumors. In addition, they may have a genetic mutation yet to be discovered that makes children susceptible to such diseases.

So far, both children have undergone surgery to remove the tumor, and both have a survival rate of 80 percent. According to her doctor, the cancer is unlikely to return as soon as they have five years of survival.

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