Treatment & Care
What's the treatment for a Desmoid tumor?
Treatment depends on the extent of the problem and your child's overall health and medical history.
Treatment your doctor recommends may include:
- Surgery - Surgical removal of your child's tumor by a surgeon is the primary treatment; and because Desmoid tumor rarely metastasizes, surgery alone is often the only treatment. However, Desmoid tumors often return, so sometimes more than one surgery is needed.
- Anti-inflammatory medication - Given to help manage pain and swelling. In some cases these medications will cause the tumor to slowly shrink.
- Radiation therapy - Using high-energy rays (radiation) from a specialized machine to damage or kill cancer cells and shrink tumors; radiation is used alone or in conjunction with surgery.
- Hormone therapy - Because some hormones seem to increase the growth of Desmoid tumors, anti-hormonal medications are sometimes used in treatment.
- Chemotherapy - If surgeons are unable to remove your child's tumor because of the size or location, researchers are testing some types of chemotherapy to reduce the tumor
What is the recommended long-term care for children treated for Desmoid tumors?
Children should visit a survivorship clinic every year to:
- manage disease complications
- screen for early recurrence of cancer
- manage late effects of
A typical follow-up visit may include some or all of the following:
- a physical exam
- laboratory testing
Through the David B. Perini, Jr. Quality of Life Clinic at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, childhood cancer survivors receive a comprehensive follow-up evaluation from their cancer care team.
- Our childhood cancer survivorship clinic is held weekly.
- In addition to meeting with your pediatric oncologists, your child may see one of our endocrinologists, cardiologists, neurologists, neuro-psychologists or alternative/complementary therapy specialists.
We also offer the following services:
- patient and family education
- psychosocial assessment
- genetic counseling
- reproductive and fertility evaluation and counseling
- opportunities to speak with other childhood cancer survivors