Introduction Tumors of the cerebellum are the most common brain tumors in children. Modern treatment and aggressive surgery have improved the overall survival. Consequently, growing numbers of survivors are at high risk for developing adverse and long-term neurological deficits including deficits of cognition, behavior, speech, and language. Post-operative cerebellar mutism syndrome (pCMS) is a well-known and frequently occurring complication of cerebellar tumor surgery in children. In the acute stage, children with pCMS may show deterioration of cerebellar motor function as well as pyramidal and cranial neuropathies. Most debilitating is the mutism or the severe reduction of speech and a range of neurobehavioral symptoms that may occur. In the long term, children that recover from pCMS continue to have more motor, behavioral, and cognitive problems than children who did not develop pCMS after cerebellar tumor surgery. The severity of these long-term sequelae seems to be related to the length of the mute phase. Aim of this narrative review The impact of pCMS on patients and families cannot be overstated. This contribution aims to discuss the present knowledge on the natural course, recovery, and rehabilitation of children with pCMS. We suggest future priorities in developing rehabilitation programs in order to improve the long-term quality of life and participation of children after cerebellar tumor surgery and after pCMS in particular.

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Keywords Cerebellar mutism syndrome, brain tumor . Rehabilitation . Speech . Language . Ataxia . Behavior . Child
Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00381-019-04229-6, hdl.handle.net/1765/128546
Journal Child's Nervous System
Citation
Paquier, P.F, Walsh, K. S., Docking, K.M., Hartley, H., Kumar, R, & Catsman-Berrevoets, C.E. (2020). Post-operative cerebellar mutism syndrome: rehabilitation issues. Child's Nervous System, 36(6), 1215–1222. doi:10.1007/s00381-019-04229-6