International Brain Tumor Awareness Week 2018
The 12th International Brain Tumour Awareness Week will be held from Saturday, 20th October to Saturday, 27th October inclusive.
This week is here to draw attention to the particular challenges of a brain tumour and the need for a special response and an increased research effort.
So we have put some symptoms and statistics here to help raise awareness.
The possibility of being diagnosed with a brain tumour is a shocking and life-changing event. If your doctor suspects a brain tumour, it is important to seek out other doctors specialized in diagnosing and treating brain tumours. The brain is a complex and vital organ, and treatment often causes life-long changes.
About the brain and central nervous system
The brain and spinal column make up the central nervous system (CNS), where all vital functions are controlled. These functions include thought, speech, and body movements. This means that when a tumour grows in the CNS, it can affect a person’s thought processes, the way they talk, or movements.
Anatomy of the brain
The brain is made up of 3 main parts: the cerebrum, the cerebellum, and the brain stem. The meninges, which surround the brain, are also considered part of the brain.
- The cerebrum. This is the largest part of the brain. It contains 2 cerebral hemispheres on either side of the brain that each control the opposite side of the body. It is divided into 4 lobes where specific functions occur:
- The frontal lobe controls reasoning, emotions, problem-solving, expressive speech, and movement
- The parietal lobe controls the sensations of touch, such as pressure, pain, and temperature. It also controls parts of speech, visual-spatial orientation, and calculation
- The temporal lobe controls memory, special senses such as hearing, and the ability to understand spoken or written words
- The occipital lobe controls vision
- The cerebellum. The cerebellum is located at the back part of the brain below the cerebrum. It is responsible for coordination and balance and controls functions on the same side of the body.
- The brain stem. This is the portion of the brain that connects to the spinal cord and the cerebellum. It controls involuntary functions essential for life, such as the beating of the heart and breathing. Messages for the functions controlled by the cerebrum and cerebellum travel through the brain stem to the body.
About primary brain tumours
Primary brain tumours are those that start in the brain. A primary brain tumour is described as low-grade or high grade. A low-grade tumour generally grows slowly, but it can turn into a high-grade tumour. A high-grade tumour is more likely to grow faster.In adults, secondary brain tumors, also called brain metastases, are much more common than primary tumours.
About secondary brain tumours
A secondary brain tumour is a cancerous tumour that started in another part of the body, such as the breast, lung, or colon, and then spread to the brain. If cancer spreads to the meninges and the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), it is called leptomeningeal metastases or neoplastic meningitis. This condition occurs more commonly in people with leukemia, lymphoma, melanoma, breast cancer, or lung cancer. This section covers primary brain tumours and provides some information on brain metastases. To learn more detailed information about cancer that started elsewhere in the body and spread to the brain, read about that specific type of cancer. Types of brain tumours