World Brain Tumour Day is observed on 8th of June every year since 2000. This day was first observed by German Brain Tumour Association. This is a non-profit organisation which raises public awareness and educates people about brain tumour.
What is Brain Tumour?
Brain tumour is an abnormal or uncontrolled growth of cells found in the brain. In a healthy human body, normal cells grow old or die and new cells take their place. Sometimes, this process goes wrong. Some unnecessary new cells are produced when the body doesn’t need them, and old or damaged cells don’t die as they should. The formation of these extra cells often forms a mass of tissue called a growth or tumour. There are two main types of tumours which are called benign tumours (harmless growth) and malignant (cancerous tumours).
Some Facts about Brain tumour
- Brain tumour can occur at any age.
- The exact cause of brain tumour is not clear.
- The symptoms of brain tumour depend on their size, type, and location.
- The most common type of primary brain tumour among adults are astrocytoma, meningioma, and oligodendroglioma.
- The most common type of primary brain tumours in children are medulloblastoma, grade I or II astrocytoma, (or glioma) ependymoma, and brain stem glioma.
- Family history and high dose X-rays are risk factors for brain tumour.
- Brain tumours are diagnosed by the doctor based on the results of a medical history and physical examination and various specialized tests of the brain and nervous system.
- Options for brain tumour treatment include surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy or a combination of treatments.
Symptoms of brain tumour:
- Headache (usually worse in the morning)
- Nausea and vomiting
- Changes in speech, vision, or hearing
- Problems in balancing or walking
- Changes in mood, personality, or ability to concentrate
- Problems with memory
- Muscle jerking or twitching (seizures or convulsions)
- Numbness or tingling in the arms or legs
- Abnormal fatigue and weariness
- Surgery: Surgery is usually the first step in the treatment of both benign and primary malignant brain tumours. This is performed on patient to remove maximum tumour so as to maintain neurological function.
- Radiotherapy: High energy beams of radiation focus on cancerous tissue to stops them from multiplying.
- Chemotherapy: Chemotherapy is a treatment where anti-cancer drugs are used to kill cancer cells, or to stop them from multiplying.
- Steroids: Steroids are commonly used for reduction and prevention of inflammation around a brain tumour.
- Anti-seizure medication: This is recommended for patients suffering from seizures.
- Ventriculoperitoneal shunt (Also called a VP shunt): A VP shunt may be placed in the head to drain excess fluid from inside the brain thereby helping to control the pressure.