UNDERSTANDING BRAIN TUMORS
Brain tumors are a mass of abnormal cells. It may be inside your brain, or it may be next to your brain. It can grow and press harmfully against healthy brain tissue. This can cause a wide range of problems throughout your body. A brain tumor can severely impact your life.
There are many types of brain tumors and they can be classified in different ways. A tumor can be classified by where it originally formed. A tumor that originates in your brain is called a “primary” tumor. A primary tumor can be noncancerous or it can be cancerous. A tumor that originates in another part of your body and then travels to your brain is called a “metastatic” tumor. Metastatic tumors are always cancerous.
Malignant (Cancerous) Brain Tumors
“Primary” Brain Tumors (start in the brain):
- Glioblastoma Multiforme (grade IV / “high grade”)
- Anaplastic Astrocytoma or Oligodendroglioma (grade III / “medium grade”)
- Astrocytoma or Oligodendroglioma (grade II /”low grade”)
- Ependymoma, Medulloblastoma, Primary CNS Lymphoma
“Secondary” or Metastatic Brain Tumors (spread from elsewhere):
- Lung Cancer
- Breast Cancer
- Also Kidney, Malignant Melanoma or Colon Cancer
- Rarely if ever… Prostate, Uterine, nonmelanoma skin cancers
“Benign” (Non-Cancerous) Brain Tumors:
- Acoustic Neuroma
Because the brain is so complex, a brain tumor can affect you in many different ways. A tumor can cause physical problems, such as headaches, nausea, and seizures. It can cause behavioral changes, such as confusion and impulsiveness.
Your symptoms depend on your particular tumor and its location.
A brain tumor can be treated in many different ways. The NeuroMedical Center’s brain tumor treatment team is led by Dr. Jon D. Olson, M.D., the area’s only board certified Neurologist/Neuro-Oncologist, who has unique expertise in the diagnosis and treatment of cancerous tumors of the brain including. Our brain tumor teams provide the most advanced brain tumor shrinking procedures including stereotactic radiosurgery with the Gulf Coast’s first and only Gamma Knife Icon. Dr. Olson was also the first physician in the region to prescribe Optune for GBM patients. Our neurological experts will work closely with you, your family, and your physician to achieve the best plan of care for you.