10 Signs It’s A Brain Tumour And You’re Not Turning into a Zombie
Many of us go through life looking like zombies at times… or perhaps most of the time. Take for instance – overspending too much time on your computer or the unexplained addiction with your phone or driving like a crazy person on the road. Hmmm… there’s some serious signs here.
But what if for real you suddenly experience a change in your mood and personality, and you can’t seem to remember what you did a while ago and your body seems to mobilize in a zombie-kind-of-mode and you find yourself lacking coordination and balance – be warned – you’re not in an audition for The Walking Dead – but this might be a strong sign of a brain tumour you need to pay serious attention to.
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So to calm your fears and keep you on the radar for early signals and warnings – Here are our 10 notable signs you might be suffering from a brain tumour and – NO – you’re not turning into a Zombie!
If this happens, take our advice and visit your nearest doctor now for a thorough health inspection and medical screening, a.s.a.p.!!!
10 Signs It’s A Brain Tumour And You’re Not Turning into a Zombie
The most common symptom for brain tumour. Most patients claim to have experienced headaches in several different ways with no sure sign it is caused by a brain tumour. While headaches are pretty normal and we experiences occasionally, however, noticeable signs of apparent change in your headaches, other than what you have experienced before – could be a strong indicator of a tumour in the brain.
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2.Fits or seizures
The way our body is wired is that when our nerve cells communicate, it sends electrical signals to one another. But when these electrical signals behave unusually, it causes a person to enter into a fit or seizure mode. When a person experiences a seizure, they normally lose sense of consciousness, suffer muscle contractions and numbness and some also experience sensory distortions. Second after headaches, fits or seizures are claimed to be a common indicator for brain tumour. Seizures usually vary depending on the location of the brain it is triggered. Typically, a seizure lasts between 2-3 minutes or longer up to 5 minutes or more. Seizures are not something to be ignored. If you are experiencing one, it is best to get your brain scanned.
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3.Weakness in limbs or loss of motor skills
Part of our brain is also responsible for motor functions in the body. When a tumour upsets a certain part of the brain related to your body’s motor functions, it could cause grave changes in your movement and coordination causing lack of balance, body collapsing and even cock-eyed facial expressions. Be warned: These symptoms are red light signals to seek a doctor immediately!
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4.Abnormal Change in vision
Abnormal eye movements or change in vision are also strong indicators of a brain tumour. Some of the common visual symptoms may include; eye bulging, flickering, double vision and blurredness, reduced awareness of people or objects as well as difficulty to navigate from one place to another. If you are experiencing such abnormalities in your vision, you should seek a doctor or optician straightaway.
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5.Feeling of Nausea or vomiting
Most people experience nausea or vomiting but that does not mean that they have a brain tumour. However, as with headaches, if these symptoms you are experiencing is not related to any other usual conditions experienced previously, could be a strong sign of a tumour growth in the brain.
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6.Abrupt changes in personality
When it comes to our bodily function and system – our brain is the main controller – the boss basically. It controls what we think, feel, do and more. So when a person suffers from a brain tumour, it could change their personality partially or even completely. The way they behave or do things will not be as same as before. For instance; they could become easily forgetful, laugh at things that may not seem funny or impulsively explode in anger.
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7.Cognitive difficulties and loss of memory
Most patients who have had brain tumour claim to suffer from memory loss, lack of focus and concentration and difficulty to process information. Some also struggle with speech problems as well as speaking or understanding what others are saying.
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The pituitary gland is a part of the brain that regulates our hormones. It controls the release of hormones from other endocrine glans such as the thyroid gland, sex glands and adrenal glands. It also releases hormones that affects our body’s tissues like bone mass and breast feeding for women. So when there is an abnormal growth in the pituitary gland, the body’s hormones become haywire resulting in hormonal disorders. Some of the symptoms could include; nipple discharge, irregular or absent menstrual periods for women and decreased sexual function in men. However, most pituitary tumours are noncancerous or (benign).
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9.Loss of hearing
Acoustic neuroma is a type of tumour that causes hearing loss. When this tumour attacks a person’s hearing nerve, it will result in high frequency of hearing loss and poor word recognition. Depending on the size, location and type of tumour, a person may struggle to hear well in a crowded room, will not be able to locate where exactly the sound is coming from and listening to music will be a challenge. So pay attention to your hearing!
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10.Loss of appetite
While loss of appetite is caused by many other factors, it could also be caused by cancer itself. When a tumour affects a certain function of the brain it causes that function to disrupt and react differently. So gradually as the tumour develops, the function is interrupted. For instance a person might lose their sense of smell and taste or they may face difficulty in swallowing their food, that they lose their appetite and thirst.
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It is important to note, the way our brain operates is that different parts of the brain control different body functions. So when cancer develops or spreads in a particular area of the brain, the affected area loses control of its functions and causes the body to react other than the ordinary. And so these warning signs are important and not to be taken for granted.
Cancer is frightening, and especially when there’s a tumour in the brain – you got to be alarmed. Although some brain tumours are less aggressive than others, still these tumours have the potential to cause your senses, memories, motor functions, personality and speech abilities to malfunction.
Like in any other type of cancer, brain cancer can be life and death, especially if it is not treated early. So it is important to watch out for early signs.
Let’s get down to the gist of it! More juicy facts for you…
So what exactly is a Brain Tumour?
Brain tumours are caused by uncontrollable and abnormal cells that develops in the brain. A tumour that originates in the brain is known as a primary brain tumour, while a cancerous tumour that is spread from other parts of the body to the brain is known as a secondary brain tumour or a metastatic brain tumour. Primary brain tumours can be benign (non-cancerous) or malignant (cancerous), while metastatic brain tumours are obviously, cancerous. The popular known metastatic brain tumours are spread from lung, breast, colon (bowel), or skin (melanoma).
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How does a brain tumour symptom develop?
Depending on the type of brain tumour, symptoms can develop gradually or over a short time. Malignant and benign tumours can cause similar symptoms. Typically the symptoms depend on the location of the tumour in the brain. As the tumour grows, it affects the surrounding brain tissue and prevents that part of the brain from functioning normally. Sometimes the tumour can cause swelling in the brain adding pressure and other additional symptoms to develop. Although some of the symptoms can be benign, still it is a sign not to be ignored.
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How brain tumours are treated?
Treatments for brain tumours may include one type of treatment or a combination of treatments. The standard treatments include surgery, radiotherapy, chemotherapy and also drugs to treat symptoms. Usually doctors will recommend the necessary treatments depending on the patient’s age, overall health, as well as type, severity and stage of cancer. Some brain tumours can be removed completely by surgery. However, if a brain tumour cannot be removed, radiotherapy treatment will be used to slow the growth of the tumour as well as to shrink the tumour and reduce any swelling around it.
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Brain Cancer statistic in Malaysia?
According to the Malaysia Cancer Statistic Data and Figures Peninsular Malaysia 2006, brain cancer or brain tumour is listed as the 10th most frequent cancer in males and 9th most frequent cancer in females.
Are brain tumours fatal? What is the survival rate?
Like in all cancers, brain tumours can be deadly and pose a major threat on a person’s life, impacting their lifestyle, disrupting ordinary routines and changing a patient in every way than they were before. Brain tumours do not discriminate and it affects men, women, and children of all races and ethnicities, worldwide.
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Risk Factors for Brain Tumour
Why brain tumour happens? What causes it? Generally, the causes of brain tumour is unclear. However, some potential factors could increase your risk of brain tumour. Some of these notable risk factors include:
- Ionizing Radiation
In simple definition, radiation happens when energy is transferred from one body to another body through a medium or space. And Ionizing radiation happens when electromagnetic waves are used to ionize or remove electrons from an atom. So take for instance, when atoms in human living cells become ionize, the cells could either die, heal by itself or react abnormally and in turn become cancer. Usually cells that are weak or is reproducing become victims of ionizing radiation, for instance; a forming foetus. Ionizing radiation could also include exposure through atomic bombs and through radiation therapy when treating cancer. So, if you have been exposed to ionizing radiation, you stand a higher chance of developing brain tumour.
If there is someone in your family history who has had brain tumour before, you might have a higher risk of developing the disease.
As you age, your risk of a brain tumour increases, hence, the higher ratio of brain tumour in adults is mostly common. However, that doesn’t mean that kids are exempted, as some brain tumours do occur in children.
Other risk factors could also include exposure to chemicals in the environment, home, work, unhealthy diet and lifestyle choices.
- Cancer is painful. It not only affects a person’s life but it also has the power to destroy it. So it is important to take early care and prevention. While a cancer diagnosis can be very expensive, assessing your situation is the first step in planning ahead to meet your needs. Be protected right from the start now with AXA Cancer Care