A Brain Tumor is a abnormal tissue mass growing in any part of the brain. Some brain cells grow in an uncontrolled manner and form these tumour. These tumours can arise from any part of the brain, spinal cord or nerves. The tumour can cause pressure/mass effect on the normal brain and interferes with normal mental and bodily functions.
The Tumour can be slow growing benign tumour or rapidly growing malignant tumours.
Malignant tumours are agin classified ino different grades by WHO. Higher the grade the rapid is the growth rate of tumour.
Types of brain tumour depend on the cell of origin of tumour. Different benign types include Meningioma (arising from Dura),Schwanoma( arising from Schwann cells).
Different malignant types include Glioma(arising from Glial cells),Ependymoma (arising from Ependymomal cells),medulloblastoma.
Brain tumors can form in any part of the brain, but there are certain regions where specific tumors form:
General signs and symptoms caused by brain tumors may include:
Brain tumors that aren't cancerous tend to cause symptoms that develop slowly. Noncancerous brain tumors also are called benign brain tumors. They might cause subtle symptoms that you don't notice at first. The symptoms might get worse over months or years.
Cancerous brain tumors cause symptoms that get worse quickly. Cancerous brain tumors also are called brain cancers or malignant brain tumors. They cause symptoms that come on suddenly. They get worse in a matter of days or weeks.
Surgery is the usual treatment for most brain tumor. To remove a brain tumor, an opening is made in the skull. This operation is called a craniotomy. Whenever possible, attempt is made to remove the entire tumor, But if the tumor cannot be completely removed without damaging vital brain tissue, removal of as much tumor as possible is carried out. Partial removal helps to relieve symptoms by reducing pressure on the brain and reduces the amount of tumors to be treated by radiation therapy or chemotherapy.
Some tumors cannot be removed much, therefore in those cases only a biopsy is required. A small piece of the tumor is removed with stereotactic guidance, that a pathologist can examine it under a microscope to determine the type of cells it contains. This helps to decide the treatment of tumour.
In some cases of tumour, if the lesion is in the vital area of the brain, Awake craniotomy with intra operative neuromonitoring is preffered to remove the lesion. This helps in minimizing the functional loss post surgery.