Brain tumors are abnormal growths inside the skull. They are among the most common types of childhood cancers. Some are benign tumors, which aren't cancer. They can still be serious. Malignant tumors are cancerous.
Childhood brain and spinal cord tumors can cause headaches and other symptoms. However, other conditions can also cause the same symptoms.
Brain tumors may be benign (noncancerous) or malignant (cancerous). They may destroy or damage brain cells by producing inflammation and pressing on other parts of the brain. This pressure causes cerebral edema (brain swelling) and increased intracranial pressure (the pressure within the skull).
The cause of primary brain tumors is unknown, although some tumors such as retinoblastoma tend to be hereditary. Others tumors, such as craniopharyngioma, are present from birth.
Tumors in any part of the brain might raise the pressure inside the skull (known as intracranial pressure). This can be caused by growth of the tumor, swelling in the brain, or blocked flow of cerebrospinal fluid.
Increased pressure can lead to general symptoms such as:
- Crossed eyes or blurred vision
- Balance problems
- Behavior changes
- Drowsiness or even coma
- Brain aneurysms are caused by a weakness in the walls of blood vessels in the brain. There are several reasons why this may happen, although an exact cause isn't always clear.
- The brain requires a large supply of blood delivered via four main blood vessels that run up the neck and into the brain.
- These blood vessels divide into smaller and smaller vessels in the same way the trunk of a tree divides into branches and twigs.
- Most aneurysms develop at the points where the blood vessels divide and branch off, as these areas are often weaker.
- A brain aneurysm is usually diagnosed using a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan and angiography (MRA), or a computerised tomography (CT) scan and angiography (CTA).
- An MRI scan is usually used to look for aneurysms in the brain that haven't ruptured. This type of scan uses strong magnetic fields and radio waves to produce detailed images of your brain.
- A CT scan is usually preferred if it's thought the aneurysm has ruptured and there's bleeding on the brain (subarachnoid haemorrhage).
- This type of scan takes a series of X-rays, which are then assembled by a computer into a detailed three-dimensional image.
- In some cases, a ruptured aneurysm is not picked up by a CT scan. If a CT scan is negative but your symptoms strongly suggest you have a ruptured aneurysm, a test called a lumbar puncture will usually be carried out.
- A lumbar puncture is a procedure where a needle is inserted into the lower part of the spine to remove a sample of the fluid (cerebrospinal fluid) that surrounds and supports the brain and spinal cord. This fluid can be analysed for signs of bleeding.
- A risk factor is anything that affects a person’s chance of getting a disease such as a brain or spinal cord tumor. Different types of cancer have different risk factors.
- Lifestyle-related risk factors such as diet, body weight, physical activity, and tobacco use play a major role in many adult cancers. But these factors usually take many years to influence cancer risk, and they are not thought to play much of a role in childhood cancers, including brain tumors.
- Very few risk factors have been found for brain and spinal cord tumors. There is no clear cause for most of these tumors.
- Conventional radiation therapy
- Stereotactic radiosurgery, a precise form of radiation therapy
- Stem-cell rescue, blood and marrow transplantation
- Interventions to address side effects of the tumor or the treatment
- Rehabilitation to regain lost strength and skills
- Ongoing follow-up care to detect recurrence of the tumor and manage late effects of treatment
We encourage you to educate yourself about Pediatric Brain Tumors Surgery in India, and also the benefits from the right kind of Surgery before making a choice.
You can be rest assured that with Surgicure International's expertise, we bring in a wonderful experience of Surgery in India, which we have been doing so for almost a decade now.