Medulloblastoma

Last reviewed: 16 Apr 2022
Last updated: 10 Feb 2022

Summary

Definition

History and exam

Key diagnostic factors

  • headache
  • nausea and vomiting
More key diagnostic factors

Other diagnostic factors

  • behavioural changes
  • diplopia
  • ophthalmoplegias
  • bulging anterior fontanelle
  • papilloedema
  • nystagmus
  • head tilt
  • ataxia
  • dysmetria
Other diagnostic factors

Risk factors

  • age 3-8 years
  • male sex
  • associated inherited familial syndromes
More risk factors

Diagnostic investigations

1st investigations to order

  • brain MRI
  • brain CT
  • histology
  • cervical, thoracic, and lumbar spine MRI
  • lumbar puncture
More 1st investigations to order

Investigations to consider

  • postoperative MRI
More investigations to consider

Treatment algorithm

ACUTE

age <3 years

age ≥3 years

Contributors

Authors

Gail Horan, MB, BcH, BAO, BMed Sci, MRCPI, FRCR

Consultant Clinical Oncologist

Department of Oncology

Addenbrooke's Hospital

Cambridge

UK

Disclosures

GH declares that she has no competing interests. Previously, she did paid consultancy work for Janssen and Bayer, and held shares in GenesisCare. GH is the author of a reference cited in this topic.

Fiona Harris, MBChB, MRCP, FRCR

Consultant Clinical Oncologist

Addenbrookes Hospital

Cambridge

UK

Disclosures

FH declares that she has no competing interests.

Thankamma V. Ajithkumar, MBBS, DMRT, MD, FRCR, FRCPEdin, MBA

Consultant Clinical Oncologist

Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Cambridge

UK

Disclosures

TVA is the author of a reference cited in this topic.

Acknowledgements

Dr Gail Horan, Dr Fiona Harris, and Dr Thankamma V. Ajithkumar would like to gratefully acknowledge Dr Sindu Vivekanandan, Dr Barry Pizer, Dr Michael J. Fisher, Dr Phillip B. Storm, and Dr Gregory G. Heuer, the previous contributors to this topic.

Disclosures

SV, BP, MJF, PBS, and GGH declare that they have no competing interests.

Peer reviewers

David Rowed, MD

Division of Neurosurgery

University of Toronto

Toronto

Ontario

Canada

Disclosures

DR declares that he has no competing interests.

Michael Vloeberghs, MD, PhD

Professor of Paediatric Neurosurgery

Nottingham University Hospital

Nottingham

UK

Disclosures

MV declares that he has no competing interests.

  • Medulloblastoma images
  • Differentials

    • Migraine
    • Viral infection
    • Ependymoma
    More Differentials
  • Guidelines

    • Brain tumours (primary) and brain metastases in adults
    • EANO-EURACAN clinical practice guideline for diagnosis, treatment, and follow-up of post-pubertal and adult patients with medulloblastoma
    More Guidelines
  • padlock-lockedLog in or subscribe to access all of BMJ Best Practice

Use of this content is subject to our disclaimer