Brain Tumor Myths and Facts
A brain tumor is a tumor which develops in the cells of the brain. A growth, collection or mass of abnormal cells in the brain is called a brain tumor. These tumors can occur at any age.
It can be either noncancerous (benign) or cancerous (malignant) and vary greatly based on their location. The location of the tumor determines the effect on the central nervous system (CNS) along with their symptoms and growth rate. When benign or malignant tumors grow, they can cause the pressure inside your skull to increase, this can lead to brain damage and can be life- threatening. Brain tumor treatment options depend on the type of brain tumor one has along with its size and location.
It is necessary to increase awareness by educating the people that early diagnosis and timely treatment along with busting the myths around this disease can help.
Some common symptoms of brain tumor:
- Blurred vision or double vision
- Behavioral changes
- Nausea and vomiting
Some myths and facts of brain tumor are as follows:
Brain tumor is a complicated and one of the most challenging cancers, which requires a thorough assessment for its treatment and recovery .There are a lot of myths and misconceptions surrounding this tumor and needs to be addressed.
Myth 1: Tumor in the brain, means brain cancer
Fact: Brain tumors can be of two types namely benign, which is non-cancerous and malignant, which is cancerous. Certain brain tumors can damage brain cells and affect surrounding tissues and are cancerous, the rest can be treated.
Myth 2: All brain tumor patients have the same signs and symptoms
Fact: Every patient diagnosed with a brain tumor will experience diverse symptoms. Even though there are a lot of common symptoms, not all patients exhibit the same symptoms. The signs and symptoms of a brain tumor entirely depend on the type, size and location of the tumor in the brain. Some individuals can have symptoms that may be quite evident enough and worsen with time while the rest may not have any symptom indicating a tumor.
Myth 3: Only Adults get brain tumor
Fact: These brain tumors can occur at any age. Newborns have also been found with a brain tumor. The age of a person cannot determine the risk of developing a brain tumor.
Myth 4: Usage of mobile phones can lead to a brain tumor
Fact: There is no recent research or proof to suggest that usage of mobile phone can lead to a brain tumor, but prolonged exposure to any radiation can have overall health effects and should be avoided.
Myth 5: Headaches and blurred vision indicate a brain tumor
Fact: Majority of the time, headaches and blurred vision can be due to exhaustion, weakness or tiredness. It is not necessary that a person with a headache and blurred vision has a tumor. A headache has various causes and needs a detailed evaluation.
Myth 6: A brain tumor runs in the family
Fact: It is not necessary that people who have family members with brain tumors are likely to get affected. There is no research suggesting that it runs in the family.
Myth 7: If treated, brain tumors are not recurrent
Fact: When a person has a brain tumor and gets the treatment for its removal, then it should be followed by a routine check-up and follow ups. Although benign tumors occur rarely and can be removed surgically, still a thorough follow up is advised. Tumors can be recurrent if proper care is not taken after treatment.
- Mayo clinic, Brain tumor: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/brain-tumor/symptoms-causes/syc-20350084
- Johns Hopkins medicine, Headache: Could It Be a Brain Tumor?: https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/conditions-and-diseases/headache/headache-could-it-be-a-brain-tumor
- Healthline, Brain tumor: https://www.healthline.com/health/brain-tumor
- WebMD, Brain Tumors in Adults: https://www.webmd.com/cancer/brain-cancer/brain-tumors-in-adults
About Author –
MCH (NIMHANS), Advanced training in Stereotactic Radiosurgery (Brain Lab Academy - Germany). His expertise includes frameless stereotactic neurosurgery, minimally invasive spine surgery, spine stabilization, nerve radiofrequency ablation, cranial micro neurosurgery, cranio-spinal trauma, and endoscopic surgery.