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Can A Child Die From Pediatric Brain Tumor & Can You Claim Disability Benefits?

Tumors of the brain account for 20 percent of all pediatric cancers and perhaps the most common cause of cancer deaths.1

Brain tumors are now the leading cancer killer of kids but sudden death from an undiagnosed primary intracranial neoplasm is exceptionally rare.2

The Disability Tax Credit is available for parents who have a child suffering from a childhood brain tumor.3

Can A Child Die From Pediatric Brain Tumor?

It can be an emotional and draining experience to lose your lovely child battling with childhood brain tumors however because of advances in treatment, more than 80% of children are treated for cancer and lead to an increased survival rate.

But all cancer treatment is equally accompanied by side effects that either be long-lasting or go away in a short time. They are called long-term effects or late effects, and this has become a focus of care and research. 1

However, the way the child responds to treatment is unique and varies from one child to another. But other factors such as the type of cancer, the location of cancer in the brain, the treatment method adopted, the hereditary factors and the child’s overall health acts as a contributing factor for the risk of side effects.

Generally, the late effects due to chemotherapy and radiation damage the healthy cells in the body and lead to the gradual decline of health. Boys are about one-third more likely to die of pediatric tumors than girls however the reason remains unknown. But the good part is the five-year survival rate is very good. 2

Can You Claim Disability Benefits For Pediatric Brain Tumor?

A diagnosis of cancer in your child can be devastating news for a parent so you likely focus most of your energy on keeping your child comfortable, happy, and healthy.

However, at the same time, the time spent, and the significant financial struggle can cause distress to the family.

However, brain tumors fall under social security benefits. A disease is considered a disability when it has an impairment either medical, psychological, or psychiatric. The Social Security Administration (SSA) offers monetary funds for eligible kids with a tumor that can help cover medical bills and other day-to-day costs.

Furthermore, several families that do not qualify for disability benefits can get enrolled in Medicaid (a federal and state program that helps with healthcare costs) in most states to ease the burden of medical expenses. But before applying for disability benefits on behalf of your infant or teen, it is mandatory to check your finances.

Government offers Supplementary Security Income (SSI) for children under 18 years of age provided that you and your spouse are not earning a living wage. However, on the contrary, if there is an income from either one of them you will not be eligible for disability benefits.

Income eligibility is also dependent on family size, for instance in a single-parent family, when the parent’s income is less than $36000 a year, the child qualifies for SSI benefits. 3

Death of a loved one is never easy, especially when it comes to your children, it should be a daunting experience. Some children fade away quickly whereas some kids show a gradual decline in their health. Certain signs and symptoms typically indicate that your child is nearing deathbed.

This includes sleep more and spends less time staying awake, avoid foods that are hard to chew or digest, often choose to withdraw from activities, increased physical pain, and experience excessive secretions call it death rattle.


  1. Organization, American Childhood Cancer, and American Childhood Cancer Organization. “What Is the Expected Life Span of Childhood Brain and Spinal Cord Cancer Tumors.” ACCO, 19 July 2019, www.acco.org/blog/what-is-the-expected-life-span-of-childhood-brain-and-spinal-cord-cancer-tumors/
  2. “Brittany Maynard’s Death: Why Is Brain Cancer So Lethal?” NBCNews.com, NBCUniversal News Group, 25 Nov. 2020, www.nbcnews.com/health/cancer/brittany-maynards-death-why-brain-cancer-so-lethal-n240841
  3. “Financial Support – A Kids’ Brain Tumor Cure Foundation: PLGA Foundation.” A Kids’ Brain Tumor Cure Foundation | PLGA Foundation, 1 July 2016, https://akidsbraintumorcure.org/news-resources/financial-support/6628/social-security-disability-help/

Also Read:

Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:April 6, 2021

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