Brain cancer, which includes spinal cord tumors, is rare, with less than 24,000 new diagnoses each year in the United States, affecting both men and women. Brain cancer can be tricky to diagnose because benign brain tumors can have the same effect as malignant tumors, which is why you need the specialists at Charleston Oncology. Through comprehensive evaluations, the team of oncologists helps patients gain access to the most advanced treatment plans.
Brain Cancer Q & A
What are the most common types of brain cancer?
Brain cancer is a malignant tumor found in your brain. While this definition may seem simple enough, brain cancer can be anything but simple because a tumor in your brain may be a secondary tumor (meaning another cancer has spread to your brain) or a benign tumor.
If you have a primary brain tumor, the type depends upon the cells it affects. The most common forms of primary brain tumors include:
- Acoustic neuromas
- Pituitary adenomas
Most of these tumors are benign but can be equally problematic as malignant brain tumors depending upon their location and size.
Secondary brain tumors are far more common and are often a result of:
- Lung cancer
- Colon cancer
- Breast cancer
- Kidney cancer
The only way to know for sure what’s causing your brain tumor is to visit a specialist at Charleston Oncology for a comprehensive evaluation.
How are brain cancers diagnosed?
If you have a brain tumor, it’s often the symptoms that drive you to a doctor, which include:
- Nausea and vomiting
- Vision and balance issues
- Erratic behavior or mood changes
This last point is worth noting because well over 50% of patients with brain tumors experience a seizure.
If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms, your doctor at Charleston Oncology conducts testing using the latest advanced imaging tools to get a look at what’s going on inside your brain. These diagnostic tools include:
- CT scan
- PET scan
If your doctor finds something suspicious, they may recommend a biopsy or spinal tap to confirm or rule out a cancer diagnosis.
What are the treatments for brain cancer?
Treatment depends entirely upon the location and size of your brain tumor. The doctors at Charleston Oncology have a number of treatment options they can recommend or turn to, including:
- Targeted therapy
- Alternating electric field therapy
- Clinical trials
Rest assured, your doctor works with the protocols and specialists necessary to get you the best treatment available.
Call Charleston Oncology to learn more about brain cancer and the treatments available.
Send UsA Message
I am currently undergoing treatment for breast cancer at Roper St. Francis Hospital and would like to acknowledge two physicians who truly embody your mission of “healing with compassion, faith and excellence”.
Please join Charleston Oncology and the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) in support of National Survivor Month, celebrating those who have fought the disease and those currently in treatment.
June is National Cancer Survivor Month and throughout the month we are honoring our brave patients and sharing their inspirational stories.
May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month. Melanoma is a type of skin cancer that develops when melanocytes (the cells that give the skin its tan or brown color) start to grow out of control. Watch the video to learn more about melanoma from Charleston Oncology’s Dr. Charles S. Holladay.
March is Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month. This month, Charleston Oncology recognizes the importance of spreading awareness surrounding the disease.
Dr. Shelly Shand shares important tips for diagnosing breast cancer early and the latest advancements in breast cancer.