Cancer Australia’s factsheet provides an overview of neuroblastoma staging and the symptoms and treatment that can be experienced. It covers topics such as risk factors for the disease, how diagnosis is made, and what support services are available.
Diagnostic tests will also help indicate the stage of the tumour. Staging determines where the tumour is, how large it is, which nearby organs are involved, and whether the cancer has spread to other parts of the body. This will be important for the treatment team to assess the best options, and to determine the prognosis for your child. See below for a commonly used way of staging neuroblastoma, but please note this is just a guide. Speak to your treating team for information specific to you.
Stage 2A – the tumour is only in 1 part of the body, but not all of the tumour that can be seen has been removed by surgery
Stage 2B – the tumour is only in 1 part of the body, and all of the tumour that can be seen has been removed by surgery. However, there are neuroblastoma cells in nearby lymph nodes.
The tumour has not been completely removed by surgery and has spread to the other side of the body or to nearby lymph nodes
The tumour is on 1 side of the body but has spread to lymph nodes on the other side of the body
The tumour is in the middle of the body and cannot be completely removed by surgery. It has spread to tissues or lymph nodes on both sides of the body.
Stage 4 – the tumour has spread to other parts of the body such as distant lymph nodes, liver, bones or bone marrow, or the skin
Stage 4S (also called special neuroblastoma) – the child is less than 1 year old. The tumour is only in 1 part of the body, and all the tumour that can be seen may be removed by surgery. However, the cancer has spread to the liver, skin or bone marrow, and maybe the lymph nodes near the tumour.