Surgery for Langerhans Cell Histiocytosis

Your child’s doctors may recommend surgery if a tumor is affecting your child. Sometimes surgeons can remove the LCH cells completely. Your child’s doctors also may discuss surgery to biopsy the tumor.

Pediatric surgeons use special instruments and some special techniques to avoid harming as much normal tissue as possible. A pathologist will test the tissue’s edges, its margins, to see if the entire tumor is gone while your child is in surgery. This means your child’s surgeon can remove more tumor if needed in an effort to avoid another surgery.

Batson Children’s Hospital has special surgical suites for children with operating rooms and instruments built to cater to their size and special needs.

Before surgery

Before any surgery, your child will need to undergo tests to be sure they are healthy enough for a surgery. Their surgeon will talk to them and to you about what will happen. Our pediatric surgeons explain the procedure to children as young as age 3 or 4 in simple terms they can understand. Their surgeon also will discuss possible side-effects of the surgery with your child and with you. As children get older, they play a bigger role in making the decision to have surgery.

After surgery

Your child may recover in a pediatric intensive care unit staffed by physician intensivists and nurses skilled in treating children. Doctors will meet with you and your child to discuss whether they need further treatment, rehabilitation and a follow-up schedule.