Abnormal cells can grow anywhere in the body, including in the brain. It is possible to have a benign tumor in the brain, which means it doesn’t contain cancer cells.
Where do the tumors start?
Primary Brain tumors start in the brain and are generally considered low-grade and slow growing.
Secondary Brain Tumors start elsewhere in the body and then spread to the brain. These are more common types of brain tumors.
Some risk factors for Brain Cancer are:
Age: Although anyone can develop a brain tumor, they are diagnosed more often in children or older adults.
Gender: Men generally develop brain tumors more often than women, but certain types of brain tumors are more frequently diagnosed in women.
Family history: Only about 5% of brain cancer is due to a hereditary or genetic factor.
Race and ethnicity: Data shows that in the United States, gliomas are more frequently diagnosed in the white population, while meningiomas are more common among the African American population
Prior treatment: Radiation treatments with high exposure to ionizing radiation are used to treat certain types of cancer. X-rays, CT, PET-CT, and bone scans are ionizing radiation types, and the radiation level depends on the kind of test. Used correctly, the benefits of these tests exceed the risks.
Signs & Symptoms of Brain Cancer are:
Signs and symptoms are different for each patient and may vary depending on the area of the brain affected by the tumor. It’s important to discuss any questions or concerns you may have with your physician. Symptoms may include:
Headaches that get worse over time
Nausea and vomiting
Sensory changes (vision, smell, hearing)
Problems with balance
Behavioral or emotional changes
Fatigue, Sleep Problems, Drowsiness
Screening & Diagnostic Testing
A complete physical exam and medical history should be completed. The exam will check for any unusual physical signs. A complete medical history is also important to fully understand a person’s health habits, family history, previous illnesses, and exposure. Additional testing may include:
We understand that receiving a cancer diagnosis can be a very scary and emotional time for patient and their families. Therefore, discussing any questions or concerns, you may have with your oncologist is very important. We highly recommend that if you do any research about your disease, you do so only with reputable sources. For your convenience, we’ve listed some below.