What is the treatment for germ cell tumors?
Specific treatment for germ cell tumors will be determined by your child's doctor based on:
Your child's age, overall health, and medical history
Extent of the disease
Your child's tolerance for specific medications, procedures, or therapies
Expectations for the course of the disease
Your opinion or preference
Treatment may include (alone or in combination):
Surgery (to remove the tumor and involved organs)
Bone marrow transplantation
Supportive care (for the effects of treatment)
Hormonal replacement (if necessary)
Antibiotics (to prevent or treat infections)
Continuous follow-up care (to determine response to treatment, detect recurrent disease, and manage the late effects of treatment)
What is the long-term outlook of a child with a germ cell tumor?
Prognosis greatly depends on:
The extent of the disease
The size and location of the tumor
Presence or absence of metastasis
The tumor's response to therapy
The age and overall health of your child
Your child's tolerance of specific medications, procedures, or therapies
New developments in treatment
As with any cancer, prognosis and long-term survival can vary greatly from individual to individual. Prompt medical attention and aggressive therapy are important for the best prognosis. Continuous follow-up care is essential for a child diagnosed with a germ cell tumor. Side effects of radiation and chemotherapy, as well as second malignancies, can occur in survivors of germ cell tumors. New methods are continually being discovered to improve treatment and to decrease side effects.
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