Facts about DIPG

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What is DIPG?

DIPG is a type of tumor that starts in the brain stem which controls breathing, heart rate and the nerves and muscles that help us see, hear, walk, talk and eat. DIPG affects the pons portion of the brainstem, rendering nervous system function impossible. Symptoms of DIPG are problems with balance and walking, problems with eyes, problems with chewing and swallowing, muscle weakness usually on one side, drooping face, slurred speech, and persistent headaches.

DIPG makes up 10-15% of all brain tumors in children, and there are about 150-300 new diagnoses per year in the United States. No chemotherapy drugs to date are known to have an impact on survival, and fewer that 10% of children survive two years from diagnosis. Radiation therapy improves symptoms in about 80% of cases and can prolong life by two to three months. But there is no cure. Yet. And that’s why we need to keep fighting!