Tap on and choose 'Add to Home Screen' to create a shortcut app

Tap on and choose 'Install/Install App' to create a shortcut app

Cerebellar Astrocytomas in Children Homepage

This page was last updated on June 9th, 2022



David Sandberg, M.D.

Section Editor

Kristian Aquina, M.D.

Editor in Chief

Rick Abbott, M.D.


Astrocytomas of the cerebellum are benign tumors that often can be cured with surgical resection.  Like other infratentorial tumors in children, cerebellar astrocytomas most commonly present with signs and symptoms of hydrocephalus.  The classical finding of a large cyst with an enhancing mural nodule is not present in all patients, as these tumors can be almost entirely cystic, cystic and solid, or predominantly solid.  Pathologically, pilocytic astrocytomas are most common, fibrillary astrocytomas are less common, and malignant astrocytomas are extremely rare.  After initial surgical resection, adjuvant therapy is not indicated.

Key Points

  • Management of associated hydrocephalus: Timely surgical resection alone usually obviates the need for CSF diversion.  Preoperative ETV is an option but is a point of current controversy.  Preoperative shunt placement should be avoided.
  • Overall management: Cerebellar astrocytoma is a surgical disease, and no adjuvant therapy is offered even if there is a small amount of residual tumor.  Gross total surgical resection is attempted unless tumor is adherent to the brainstem.  Radiation therapy and/or chemotherapy are reserved for recurrent disease.

Your donations keep us going

The ISPN Guide is free to use, but we rely on donations to fund our ongoing work and to maintain more than a thousand pages of information created to disseminate the most up-to-date knowledge in the field of paediatric neurosurgery.

By making a donation to The ISPN Guide you are also indirectly helping the many thousands of children around the world whose treatment depends on well-informed surgeons.

Please consider making a donation today.

Use the app

The ISPN Guide can be used as a standalone app, both on mobile devices and desktop computers. It’s quick and easy to use.

Fully featured

Free registration grants you full access to The Guide and host of featured designed to help further your own education.

Stay updated

The ISPN Guide continues to expand both in breadth and depth. Join our mailing list to stay up-to-date with our progress.