Risk Factors For Pediatric Spinal Tumors

Category: Spine | Author: Stefano Sinicropi | Date: July 2, 2020

Sequestered Spinal Discs

Spinal tumors can jeopardize the integrity of your spinal stability and have an impact on your whole body health, so it’s important to know the signs and risk factors associated with them. They most commonly develop in older individuals, but children and teens aren’t immune from their presence either. In today’s blog, we take a closer look at some of the risk factors associated with spinal tumor development in children so you can have any issues treated swiftly.

Spinal Tumor Risk In Children

In adults, tumor onset tends to be influenced by lifestyle factors, like a person’s diet, body weight, activity levels and alcohol or tobacco use. Since these factors often take years to influence a person’s tumor risk, they don’t really play a role in adolescent tumor development. Instead, some of the more common risk factors for spinal tumor onset in children and teens include:

Inherited Conditions

Certain inherited conditions can put a child at a heightened risk for spinal cord tumor development. For example, Neurofibromatosis type 1 and type 2 can be inherited from a parent and involves a disorder in the NF1 or NF2 gene. It is associated with an increased risk of different types of tumor onset, like gliomas, neurofibromas, schwannomas and meningiomas.

Other inherited or genetic conditions that have been associated with a possible increased risk of spinal tumor onset include:

  • Von Hippel-Lindau disease
  • Li-Fraumeni syndrome
  • Gorlin syndrome
  • Cowden syndrome
  • Turcot syndrome
  • Rubinstein-Taybi syndrome

Radiation Exposure

Before we truly understood the full side effects of radiation, it was used as a therapy technique for some health conditions. Now that we understand the risks associated with radiation exposure, it’s mostly only used for X-rays and cancer treatment. So as a result, radiation exposure has a really low risk factor for spine tumor development, but it should be mentioned as a potential factor nonetheless.

The good news is that these are the only two subsets of risk factors that medical experts agree can increase a child’s risk of certain spinal tumors. Other risk factors, like cell phone use, sugar substitutes or exposure to electromagnetic fields from power lines have shown no medical credibility when tested, so you need not worry about these old myths.

Considering what we know about radiation exposure, it’s encouraging and a little nerve wracking at the same time to know that there’s really nothing you can do to reduce your child’s risk of spinal tumor onset. In almost every single instance, juvenile spinal tumor onset is out of anyone’s control, but that doesn’t mean the same is true for treatment.

Spinal Tumor Surgeon

Dr. Sinicropi and his team have successfully treated numerous pediatric spinal tumors, and we can give your child the best care when it comes to surgery and recovery. Onset may be out of your hands, but treatment isn’t, so if they are complaining of back pain or you suspect that they may have a genetic factor that could increase their spinal tumor risk, consider having them visit Dr. Sinicropi to stay proactive in their care. For more information, contact his office today.

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