A brain tumor is a cluster or growth of abnormal cells in the brain. There are many different types of tumors. Some of them cause cancer, others do not. The same way, there are some that start in the brain and others that could have spread from other parts of the body, such as the membranes around the brain, the nerves or the glands. Regardless of the type of tumor, the best way to prevent it is to detect it on time. (Mayo Clinic, 2021)
Tumors can directly destroy brain cells or harm them by producing swelling or by causing pressure over other parts of the brain, which increases intracranial pressure and therefore causing frequent, strong headaches to the person who suffers from it.
What causes brain tumors?
Regarding the causes for tumors, it is said that they are due to several factors or a combination of them. Some of the known causes could be genetics, the continued exposure to radiotherapy, HIV infections or lymphomas that start in the brain when the immune system of a person is too weakened and a virus enters the body.
How to identify or suspect a brain tumor?
Signs and symptoms may vary given that they depend on the size, location and rate of growth of the tumor. Among the red flags we should be paying attention to, are the following:
- Appearance or change in the pattern of headaches
- Headaches that become more intense or more frequent
- Nausea or vomit without apparent reason
- Appearance of vision struggles such as blurry vision, double vision or loss of peripheral vision
- Loss of sensation or loss of movement in any of the extremities (arms or legs)
- Struggle to keep balance
- Difficulties of speech
- Confusion on daily matters
- Change in personality or behavior
- Seizures, specially in people without a background of having them
- Hearing problems
There are other red flags and symptoms that must be identified by a specialist, such as the increase in intracranial pressure or the obstruction of cerebrospinal fluid. It is therefore extremely important to see a doctor both for routine check ups and for consultation if we have a suspect or notice a symptom. (American Cancer Society, 2021)
Diagnosis and prevention
For the diagnosis of a brain tumor, doctors perform a variety of studies and tests. The first ones are usually an MRI or a CT scan. According to the results, the specialists proceed to recommend several options for treatment. (Clinic Barcelona, 2021)
Given that the causes for brain tumors are usually a combination of several factors (or in many cases, unknown), the early diagnosis is the most effective way of prevention and the best way to avoid bigger risks and bigger damage to the brain. This underscores the importance of visiting the doctor frequently and being in contact with health care professionals that are interested in improving the life quality of their patients. The faster the diagnosis is made for a brain tumor, and the faster the treatment begins, the better the results and the lesser sequels there will be. The same way, the treatments will be simpler and less invasive.
In Formé Medical Center, we are proud to have both the medical equipment and the best Neurology specialists dedicated to preserve and improve your health. The services that the center offers have the capability of preventing illnesses, making an appropriate diagnosis and providing treatment. If you have any questions or if you would like to schedule an appointment, call 914-723-4900 for more information regarding our services.
At Formé, our mission is your health!