Stages of Astrocytoma

Executive Summary

Staging gives clarity to the location of cancer, in addition to information on if it has spread, and whether it has applied to other body sections. Distinct forms of astrocytoma have a different stage and grade descriptions. Tumor with low grade involves no metastasis of CNS or growth so quickly, for example, Juvenile pilocytic astrocytoma is a frequent low-grade tumor in youngsters. The high-grade tumor cells do not resemble healthy astrocytes while showing metastasis throughout the central nervous system. Astrocytoma recurring to the exact location where it first occurred.

Staging and Grading system

The term “stage” refers to the location of a tumor, whether it has spread, and whether it is impacting other sections of the body. Several stages of Astrocytoma or CNS cancers in children have the potential to spread through the spinal fluid that surrounds the brain and spine, additionally, this information aids the doctor in formulating a treatment plan and determining the prognosis or possibility of recovery.

Astrocytoma is classified by its grade in addition to its staging. When viewed under a microscope, the grade describes how much tumor cells resemble healthy cells.

The tumor tissue and healthy tissue is compared. Many distinct types of cells are frequently clustered together in healthy tissue. Tumor tissue similar to healthy tissue is “differentiated” or “low-grade tumor”. “Poorly differentiated” or “high-grade tumor” refers to tumor tissue that looks substantially different from healthy tissue ​1​. The tumor’s grade could be able to tell the doctor how quickly it will spread, while, the better the prognosis, the lower the tumor’s grade ​2​.

The following are the astrocytoma Grades or Stages:

Tumor with a low grade:

Under a microscope, the low-grade tumor cells resemble healthy CNS cells, additionally, the tumor does typically not spread to other areas of the CNS or proliferate. However, the tumor can grow and apply swiftly in some cases. Tumors in the brain arise in many locations. Especially if the illness is connected to neurofibromatosis ​3​. For example, Juvenile pilocytic astrocytoma, or JPA, is a frequent low-grade tumor in youngsters.

Tumor with a high grade:

The cells of a high-grade tumor do not resemble healthy astrocytes, in addition, this sort of tumor grows swiftly and can spread throughout the central nervous system.

Astrocytoma that recurs:

A recurrent astrocytoma is a tumor that returns after treatment. Astrocytoma frequently returns to the exact location where it first appeared. If the tumor returns, more tests are performed to determine the amount of the recurrence. These tests and scans are frequently the same as those performed when the patient was first diagnosed.


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    Chung C, Laperriere N. Radiation therapy and grade II/III oligodendroglial tumors. CNS Oncol. 2015;4(5):325-332. doi:10.2217/cns.15.25
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    Forst D, Nahed B, Loeffler J, Batchelor T. Low-grade gliomas. Oncologist. 2014;19(4):403-413. doi:10.1634/theoncologist.2013-0345