‘Silent yet Serious’ Brain Tumor Indicators

  • The symptoms of a brain tumor are ‘silent yet serious’.
  • Infertility, as well as mood swings, can be indications of a brain tumor.
  • Brain cancer patients comprise less than one percent of the world’s populace based on an American Cancer Society Report.

Unlike other types of cancer, only a few people suffer from brain cancer. However, this should not be a reason to disregard it.

Here are some signs or symptoms of a brain tumor that people should look out for:

Incessant headaches

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Dr. Mike Chen, an associate professor in the division of neurosurgery, department of surgery, at City of Hope in California, said that the most prevalent sign is “a new daily headache that does not appear to go away” and does not react well to medications.

In addition, the serious discomfort a person experiences in his head may indicate that the small tumor grows fast, says Dr. Santosh Kesari, neuro-oncologist and chair of the department of translational neuro-oncology and neurotherapeutics at John Wayne Cancer Institute in Santa Monica, CA.

Slight Loss of Vision

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Bitemporal hemianopsia means an impaired peripheral vision, according to Dr. Christopher Carrubba, co-director for medical education at Med School Tutors. He explained that the change in one’s vision quality is not initially noticeable until accidents occur like bumping into things on one side of the body.

This indicator is often a symptom of pituitary tumors that compress the optic chiasm, or part of the visual pathway. However, experts said that cancer might not be the only possible cause.

Weak limbs

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Dr. Chen explained that tumors on either the left or right motor cortex of the brain can disrupt signals, leading to a “loss of function.”

He added that if a person has a brain tumor, he may not feel pain in his limbs, but either his right or left arm may fail to respond. However, weak limbs may also result from different ailments such as a vitamin D defect.

Slurred or stuttering speech

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Experts said that slurred or slow, halting speech is an indication of a brain tumor. Dr. Carruba said that stuttering, difficulty naming objects, or trouble understanding what others say are major signs of tumor in the frontal or temporal lobes.

A brain tumor may impede word formation and language comprehension.

Irritability and risky behavior

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Dr. Sumeet Vadera, a neurosurgeon at the University of California, Irvine, explained that brain tumor patients may undergo bouts of depression or anger.

The tumor affects the frontal lobe which is in charge of one’s traits. They may also exhibit a change in behavior which might be mistaken for psychiatric issues or criminal behaviors.

Hearing loss or ringing in the ear

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Severe hearing loss from one side or a persistent ringing sensation called tinnitus might indicate symptoms of a brain tumor, says Carruba, who is also an ENT specialist.

The temporal lobe, which is responsible in the sound processing to ensure one’s comprehension and language/conversation understanding, can be directly affected by the growing tumor.

Infertility

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Chen explained that tumors distress the pituitary gland which affects the production of hormones. A pituitary tumor or prolactinoma makes it hard for some women to conceive as well as to produce breast milk.

Loss of Balance

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When the cerebellum, which is in charge of balance and coordination, is affected by a tumor, a person may find walking difficult and tends to lean toward one side.

 

Source: THE Healthy



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