An ependymoma, part of the glial family (glial cells are the supportive cells of the brain), is a rare type of primary brain or spinal cord tumor. It originates in the ependyma, the cells that line the passageways in the brain where cerebrospinal fluid is produced.
* Usually local to an area of the brain, including the ventricles (cavities in the center of the brain)
* Can block the ventricles causing water in the brain
* Sometimes extends to spinal cord
* Can be slow or fast growing
* More than 90 percent occur in children, the third most common pediatric brain tumor
Ependymomas account for approximately three to six percent of central nervous system tumors and two percent of brain tumors.