Neuroblastoma is a childhood cancer of the sympathetic nervous system, affecting approximately 650 children in the U.S. every year. The cause of neuroblastoma is unknown, though most physicians believe that it is an accidental cell growth that occurs during normal development of the adrenal glands. It is a solid tumor, which takes the form of a lump or mass and commonly begins in one of the adrenal glands, though they can also develop in nerve tissues in the neck, chest, abdomen or pelvis. Most children are diagnosed by 2.5 years of age. Up to seventy percent of them have high-risk disease that has metastasized (spread to other parts of the body) by the time they are diagnosed. These high-risk patients are given a 30% survival rate. That means that 70% will relapse and there is no cure for relapse.
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