Neurocognitive late effects of pediatric brain tumors of the posterior fossa: a quantitative review.
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Deficits in neurocognitive functioning are an important area of late effects in survivors of pediatric brain tumors; however, a quantitative analysis of the magnitude of these deficits in survivors of brain tumors of the posterior fossa has not been conducted. Despite tumor locations in the posterior regions of the brain, individual studies have documented deficits in a variety of domains, reflective of impairment in other brain regions. The current study provides a comprehensive meta-analysis of literature on neurocognitive late effects found in survivors of posterior fossa tumors. Results indicated significant deficits in both specific and broad indices of neurocognitive functioning, and the overall magnitude of effects across domains ranged from medium to large (g = -0.62 to -1.69) with a large mean overall effect size (g = -1.03). Moderator analyses indicated significantly greater effects for survivors diagnosed at a younger age and those who received radiation therapy. These findings underscore the importance of monitoring neurocognitive late effects in survivors of pediatric brain tumors of the posterior fossa, as well as the need for more consistent consideration of demographic, diagnostic, and treatment-related variables to allow for examination of factors that moderate these deficits.