Brain Cancer Symptoms and Signs for Each Type of Tumors


Cancer is the uncontrolled development or abnormal growth of cells. Cancer is one of the most harmful diseases in the world. Many people believe that their risk of cancer is much higher than it was 10, 20, or 30 years ago. 

Nowadays, cancer is increasing at a rapid rate. The reason may be since cancer is more common among the elderly. It is not surprising that more cases are diagnosed as the average age of the U.S population increases. More in-depth research shows the cancer risk is actually dropping. The main reason for that being newer advancements in technology and medical science.

Also, we must be aware of the fact that cancer is a group of many diseases formed due to abnormal cell growth. These cells spread to other parts of the body and cause several disorders. They form a subset of neoplasms or tumorsTumors are actually a group of cells that have undergone unregulated growth and will form a lump. All tumor or neoplasm cells show the six hallmarks of cancer. These characteristics are required for a tumor to be a malignant tumorThey can avoid cell death, are self-sufficient to growth and insensitive to anti-growing signs. They can invade tissues, grow and spread continuously. They also induce blood vessel growth. 

The gradual progression from normal cells to these cancer cells is known as malignant progression. Still, for all that is known today about cancer, many have a lot of misconceptions about the disease. For example 
  1. We think what we do when we are young does not have an impact on our chances of getting cancer later in life. The truth is that poor lifestyle choices young people make can increase their risk of developing cancer.  Especially smoking, poor diet, lack of activity, sun exposure, and many sex partners can cause cancer. Most of the fatal cancer cases can be prevented with simple lifestyle changes. 
  2. Electronic devices such as cell phones can cause cancer in the people who use them. Some studies do suggest links between cell phones and certain rare types of brain tumors, most believe it is not so. They say phones could not increase the risk of brain tumors or other types of cancer. Even various research has found no clear or definite links between electronic consumer products and cancer. Mobile phones, microwave ovens, and such similar appliances emit low-frequency radiation. The ionization radiation can increase cancer risk by damaging DNA in the body's cells. But low frequency, non-ionizing radiation does not cause these changes in DNA. 
  3. Treatment of cancer with surgery causes it to spread throughout the body. The chances of spreading of cancer throughout the body following surgery are low. To do the standard procedures surgeons use special methods and extra precautions. This is done to prevent cancer cells from spreading during biopsies, or any other surgery to remove tumors. Henceforth, the procedures are safe and reliable. There are many types of cancer known. Most of them can be fatal to our health. 
Today we would talk about the different stages of brain cancer. For that, we first need to know about brain cancer. What is brain cancer, or generally a brain tumor? We define brain cancer as cancer that begins in the brain. A metastatic brain tumor is cancer starting elsewhere in the body and then moving into the brain. A brain tumor is nothing but a mass or growth of abnormal cells in your brain. 

Many different types of brain tumors exist. Some are noncancerous (benign) and some are cancerous (malignant). Brain tumors can either develop inside your brain, or cancer can begin in other parts of your body. Then they spread to your brain. They form secondary, or metastatic, brain tumors that cause brain cancer. The cell of origin in common brain tumors is still unknown. But recent evidence says that these tumors arise either from neural stem cells or other cells having the characteristics of neural stem cells. This is by oncogene activation and the inactivating tumor suppressor genes inside cells. Pathologically, we grade these tumors according to the World Health Organization (WHO) nomenclature.

What Are the Symptoms of Brain Cancer?

What Are the Symptoms of Brain Cancer?

Every disease causes some changes in our bodies. We call these changes occurring in our bodies as symptoms. Cancer can cause various changes in our bodies. These changes or signs indicate the abnormal growth of cells in our bodies. The symptoms of brain tumors are broad. People having brain tumors will experience them no matter if the tumor is benign (not cancerous) or cancerous. 

Primary and secondary brain tumors present also cause similar symptoms. It generally depends on the location, size, and rate of growth of the tumor. General symptoms of brain cancer include:
Headaches: Headaches are caused as a result of raised intracranial pressure. This can be an early symptom of brain cancer. It is rarely seen that only a headache occurs, with no other symptoms. Other symptoms often occurring before headaches are most common. There are certain warning signs for headaches which make it more likely to be associated with brain cancer. Location-specific symptoms 

The brain has 4 lobes. The tumor’s location is often linked to the symptoms experienced but each person may experience something different

  1. The frontal lobe of the brain:  Tumors may contribute to poor reasoning, inappropriate social behavior and personality changes. This is also responsible for poor planning, lower inhibition, and decreased the production of speech
  2. Temporal lobe of the brain: Tumors in this lobe may cause poor memory, difficulty with language comprehension. 
  3. Parietal lobe of the brain:Tumors here may result in a poor interpretation of languages and difficulty in speaking, difficulty in writing, drawing, naming, and recognizing, and poor spatial and visual perception
  4. The occipital lobe of the brain: Damage to this lobe may result in blurred vision.
  5. Cerebellum lobe of the brain: Tumors in this part can result in poor balance, muscle movement, and posture.
  6. Brain stem: Tumors on this can cause seizures, induce endocrine problems, respiratory changes, visual changes and partial paralysisWhen we diagnose a person with a brain tumor, his behavioral pattern changes. He undergoes changes in his behavior and thought patterns during his treatment. Changes in behavior may include memory problems, confusion, personality changes, and irritability. Stressful life situations can also change behavior
Specific signs and symptoms occur for each type of brain cancer or brain tumor. They are as follows:

Acoustic neuroma

It is a noncancerous and usually slow-growing tumor that develops on the vestibular nerve leading from your inner ear to your brainIt's signs and symptoms are:
  • Hearing loss, usually gradual and in some cases sudden, occurring on only one side.
  • Ringing in the affected ear 
  • Loss of balance 
  • Feeling of dizziness 
  • Facial numbness and very rare cases, weakness or loss of muscle movement.
An acoustic neuroma(in rare cases) can grow large enough to compress the brainstem. It becomes life-threatening, often leading to death. 


It is a type of cancer found in the brain or spinal cord. The beginning of astrocytoma is from the cells called astrocytes that support the nerve cellsIt's signs and symptoms are: 
When they occur in the brain, they can cause seizures, headaches, and nausea. When they occur in the spinal cord, they can cause weakness and disability in the area affected by the growing tumor.

Brain metastases: 

It occurs when cancer cells spread from their original site to the brain. They usually occur in about 10 to 30 percent of adults having cancer. These tumors create pressure and change the functioning of surrounding brain tissues, as they growIt's signs and symptoms are: 
  1. Headaches 
  2. Dizziness 
  3. Vomiting 
  4. Mental problems 
  5. Seizures 

Choroid plexus carcinoma: 

It is a rare cancerous brain tumor occurring mainly in children. It begins near the brain tissue that secretes cerebrospinal fluid. It's signs and symptoms are:
As a noncancerous tumor(choroid plexus papilloma) in this area grows, it affects the function of nearby structures in the brain. It causes excess fluid in the brain, irritability, nausea or vomiting and headaches. 


It is a rare type of noncancerous brain tumor that begins near the brain's pituitary gland. Craniopharyngioma can occur at any age. It's symptoms are: 
  1. Gradual changes in vision, 
  2. Fatigue
  3. Excessive urination 
  4. Headaches.
Children affected with this tumor may grow smaller than expected. Ependymoma:
It is a type of tumor that begins in the ependymal cells in the brain and spinal cord that line the passageways where the cerebrospinal fluid flowsIt's symptoms include: 
Headaches and seizures in children. In adult cases, it begins from the spinal cord and in most cases can cause weakness in areas those nerves control which is affected by the tumor.


It is an aggressive type of cancer that occurs in the brain or spinal cord. Astrocytes(cells that support nerve cells) form glioblastomaIt's symptoms include: 

  1. Worsening headaches
  2. Nausea
  3. Vomiting 
  4. Seizures.


This is a cancerous(malignant) brain tumor that starts in the lower back part of the brain known as the cerebellumIt spreads through the cerebrospinal fluid to other areas around the brain and spinal cord. It is a type of embryonal tumor. There are at least four subtypes of medulloblastoma. Its signs and symptoms are as follows: 

  1. Headaches
  2. Nausea
  3. Vomiting
  4. Tiredness
  5. Dizziness
  6. Double vision
  7. Poor coordination
  8. An unsteady walk, and other concerns.

In the case of children, this is the most common cancerous brain tumor


It is a type of tumor occurring in the brain and spinal cord and beginning in the glial cells that surround nerve cells and help them function. There are 3 types of gliomaAstrocytomasEpendymomas and Oligodendrogliomas. General signs and symptoms of glioma include: 

  1. Headaches
  2. Nausea
  3. The decline in brain function
  4. Unsteadiness
  5. Irritability
  6. Urinary incontinence
  7. Vision problems such as double vision or loss of peripheral vision
  8. Speech difficulties and 
  9. Seizures. 


It is a tumor that can occur in the brain or spinal cord and is formed from oligodendrocytesOligodendrocytes are those cells in the brain and spinal cord that produce a substance that protects nerve cellsIt's signs and symptoms include: 

  1. Seizures
  2. Headaches
  3. Weakness or disability in areas that nerve cells control which are tumor-affected.


It is a rare and aggressive cancer type that has it's beginning from cells inside the brain's pineal gland. The pineal gland produces melatonin that plays a significant role in your natural sleeping cycleIt's signs and symptoms include: 
  • Headaches
  • Sleepiness and 
  • Subtle changes in eye movement.

Pediatric brain tumors

Abnormal cell growths occurring in the child's brain or the tissue and structures near that regionSome types of pediatric brain tumors can be cancerous(malignant) while the others are noncancerous(benign). Symptoms of these tumors in children include: 
  • Headaches
  • Feeling of increased pressure in the head
  • Nausea and vision problems like double vision and blurred vision. 

Other common symptoms, depending on the tumor location, include: 

  1. Babies skull having fuller spots
  2. Seizures
  3. Abnormal eye movement
  4. Speech difficulties
  5. Swallowing problems
  6. Losing appetite
  7. Unsteadiness
  8. Trouble walking
  9. Numbness with regard to arm or leg
  10. Drooping sides or face
  11. Confusion 
  12. Memory problems
  13. Personality changes
  14. Hearing issues. 

Pituitary tumors

Abnormal growths that develop in our pituitary gland. Pituitary gland tumors may cause our pituitary gland in producing lower levels of hormones. The reason being it regulates important hormones in the human body. Most of the pituitary tumors are noncancerous(benign). 
The signs and symptoms of pressure from a pituitary (that does not produce hormones) tumor include headaches and vision loss.
The functioning tumors in our pituitary gland cause various symptoms related to hormone level changes. They can cause overproduction of hormones or hormonal deficiencies. 

Thus we can say, Brain cancer symptoms are the major causes of cancerous deaths. The symptoms depend on the type of brain cancer and accordingly, treatment is providedBut with recent advancements in medical science and cancer treatment procedures, it has become a lot better. The scenario is changing and we can hope to eradicate brain cancer soon.
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