Childhood Brain Cancer: The Stats



children diagnosed every year



unique brain cancers

less than


of the NCI’s budget

childhood brain cancer


Learning how to ride a bike. Making friends. Coloring outside the lines. Priceless childhood memories should be experienced with joy and levity, not interrupted by hospital visits and radiation treatment. Although survival rates have increased in recent years, brain tumors continue to steal too many childhoods.

Childhood brain cancer and adult brain cancer affect different parts of the brain and cause different symptoms. Childhood brain tumors tend to be in the lower, more sensitive parts of the brain. This makes treatment more difficult, more expensive and more urgent. On top of that, the brain of a child is still developing, so long-term side effects are much more common.

Despite the fact that pediatric brain cancer steals more lives than any other form of childhood cancer, the National Cancer Institute only dedicates 4 percent of its budget to funding pediatric brain cancer research. This underfunding makes discovering and implementing new treatments much harder and slows down the work for a cure. Natalie’s A.R.T. Foundation exists to help fund this research – as well as to support families and raise awareness so that every kid can have the childhood they deserve.

DIPG: The Stats


deadliest pediatric brain tumor


month median survival time


years without medical advancement



Nearly 60 years ago, Neil Armstrong’s daughter was diagnosed with a rare, inoperable pediatric brain tumor called Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (DIPG). She passed away less than a year later. To this day, treatment for DIPG remains virtually unchanged.

DIPG is an uncontained, malignant tumor that occurs in the brainstem, making removal impossible. Symptoms of DIPG include problems with eye movement, motor skills and hearing, along with facial weakness and drooping. Currently, standard radiation therapy is used to calm the symptoms, but the tumor will inevitably return. The survival rate is 0 percent, with children only able to live a year or two past the diagnosis.

We recognize that this prognosis sounds bleak. However, there are experts actively seeking a solution for these kids. Tissue samples are getting easier to obtain, and scientific breakthroughs are happening faster than ever, giving us hope that new treatments are getting closer every day.

DIPG affects between 200 and 400 children per year worldwide, and there have recently been three new cases in the Kansas City area. We need your help funding research and supporting these families so we can get control of this fatal disease once and for all.

For more information, please visit the DIPG Registry.

DIPG scan of brain

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