High dose chemotherapy followed by rescue with peripheral stem cells collected from the child has been incorporated into the treatment plan for some young children with malignant brain tumors. These high risk tumors are sensitive to extremely high doses of chemotherapy but these doses permanently damage normal bone marrow. The stem cells "rescue" the patient by replacing damaged or destroyed bone marrow. These types of therapies are used in the very youngest patients in an effort to avoid the use of radiation therapy with the hope of curing the child and at the same time avoiding the long term problems from radiation to the brain of a young child. It is also used in select children between 3-10 years of age in an effort to reduce the radiation therapy dose.
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