KOCHI: In order to treat patients in a better way, a national body of neuro-oncologists has come out with a set of standard operational guidelines to tackle a common brain tumour among children- medulloblastoma.
The Indian Society for Neuro-oncology said the guidelines will help treat patients in Indian conditions, which are different from the West.
"In our country, there is a lot of heterogeneity in treatment of diseases. Treatment protocols across the world are changing rapidly. Indian patients may not necessarily be like those in West - they have different demographic profile and genetic characteristics. Our resources too are different.
It is very important, therefore, not to adopt Western guidelines, which can be disastrous and may not be effective at ground level," Rakesh Jalali, professor of radiation oncology at Mumbai's Tata Memorial Hospital, said.
Jalali, who is the society's general secretary, said treatment of brain tumour comprises team of doctors - surgeon, radiation oncologist, rehabilitation experts, psychologist, pathologist and hence, it is essential to have guidelines for treatment.
The guidelines were released at the body's seventh annual conference held here recently.
Around 50,000 brain tumour patients are diagnosed every year in India and nearly 20 percent of these are children, the Amrita Institute of Medical Sciences, which hosted the conference, said in a statement.
Around 30 percent of child patients are those suffering from medulloblastoma. If detected in time, medulloblastoma can be cured in a range from 30 percent to 90 percent provided the treatment protocol is followed correctly, the statement said.
"By curing means they (patients) can live up to an age between 70 and 80," Jalali said.
The guidelines, collated on the basis of applicability to Indian conditions, will now be disseminated amongst neuro surgeons, oncologists and pathologists to ensure it is adopted widely.
The conference was attended by around 250 neuro-surgeons, oncologists and specialists from related fields from India, United States, Canada, France, Australia, Philippines and Nigeria.
Two neuro-surgeons, Aliasgar Moiyadi of Tata Memorial Hospital and D N Nandakumar from Bengaluru-based National Institute of Mental Health and Neuro Sciences (NIMHANS), were awarded for their exception contribution to the field.
Besides, three medical students were also given the Society President's Awards for Students, based on research papers presented at the conference.