Know Everything about Brain Tumor
Brain cancer is a disease of brain which happens due to growth of abnormal cells in brain. When these abnormal brain cells start growing & multiply inside the brain it leads to a primary brain tumor. If proper medication is not taken and these abnormal cells keep on growing it leads to primary brain cancer.
Now, if these same cells keep on growing and moves somewhere else in the body this is known as secondary brain cancer.
There are 2 types of tumors – Benign Tumors & Malignant/Cancerous tumors.
Till date, there is no known cause for brain cancer but there are risk factors which lead to this disease.
• Age – Brain tumors are common in older people but people with any age can develop a brain tumor.
• Gender – Men are more prone to brain tumors as compared to women, but we should consider this fact also that there are some tumors that occur only in women.
• Exposures – When a person is exposed to solvents, chemicals, pesticides, rubber & oil products, he/she have more chances to develop a tumor.
• Hereditary – More than 5% of tumors are due to gene inheritance.
• Head injuries & seizures – Head trauma have a long relationship with brain tumors. Studies show that seizures are also linked with brain tumors.
• Ionizing radiation – Ionizing radiations from x-ray machines or from various other sources leads to destruction of brain cells which can cause brain tumor.
Now when we have discussed all the risk factors leading to brain tumors let’s talk about the symptoms. How to identify if a person is having this disease? You’ll get to know as you read the symptoms below.
• Severe Headaches ( worst in the morning).
• Having difficulty in vision, listening, speech.
• Not able to concentrate.
• Mood swings.
• Difficulty in remembering things.
• Musle jerking due to low magnesium level.
In order to understand exactly what type of tumor is in the brain, doctor’s go through a lot of test procedures. Various tests are also conducted to know whether the harmful cells have spread in other parts of the body, which is also known as metastasis.
Hence the diagnosis part includes a lot of tests & examination.
Various things to be considered before the tests & examinations –
Patients signs & symptoms
Patients age & health
A person having a brain tumor needs to go through the following tests.
• Neurological test – This test is done to check if the tumor have affected the functioning of brain. In this test muscle strength, listening capability, eyesight, alertness is checked by the doctor.
• MRI – It stands for Magnetic Resonance Imaging. In this, a large machine is used to create a detailed image of the head to measure the exact size of tumor.
• CT SCAN – This machine provides a 3d image of the brain. It helps in identifying any bleeding inside the brain.
• Angiogram – This test includes the injection of a dye in the bloodstream. Due to this, the blood vessels in the brain show up in the X-ray & if a tumor is present, the x-ray shows the blood vessel which is feeding the tumor.
• Lumbar puncture – It is performed in the lower back also known as spinal tap in which a needle is inserted to collect cerebrospinal fluid for testing. This fluid surrounds the brain & spinal cord and protects them from injury
After knowing the type, size of tumor the medical team determines the possible treatment option depending upon the patients heath, age.
Treatment of brain tumor includes Radiotherapy, Chemotherapy, Surgery.
• Radiotherapy – It is a treatment which uses very high radiation rays or x rays to kill the abnormal cells of brain. This is the most frequently used method to cure brain cancer.
• Chemotherapy – This method includes injection of drugs to kill the abnormal cells in the brain. This method have side effects also which vary from person to person.
• Surgery – It is a method in which the tumor is removed from the skull completely.