Wikipedia:WikiProject Medicine/Translation task force/RTT/Simple Brain cancer
|Brain metastasis in the right cerebral hemisphere from lung cancer shown on magnetic resonance imaging.|
|Classification and external resources|
A brain tumor or intracranial neoplasm occurs when abnormal cells form within the brain. There are two main types of tumors: malignant or cancerous tumors and benign tumors. Cancerous tumors can be divided into primary tumors that started within the brain and those that spread from somewhere else known as brain metastasis tumors. This article deals mainly with tumors that start within the brain. All types of brain tumors may produce symptoms that vary depending on the part of the brain involved. These may include headaches, seizures, problem with vision, vomiting, and mental changes. The headache is classically worst in the morning and goes away with vomiting. More specific problems may include difficulty in walking, speaking and with sensation. As the disease progresses unconsciousness may occur.
The cause of most cases is unknown. Risk factors that may occasionally be involved include a number of genetic syndrome such as neurofibromatosis as well as exposure to the chemical vinyl chloride, Epstein-Barr virus, and ionizing radiation. While concern has been raised about mobile phone use the evidence is not clear. The most common types of primary tumors in adults are: meningiomas and astrocytomas such as glioblastomas. In children the most common type is medulloblastomas. Diagnosis is usually by medical examination along with computed tomography or magnetic resonance imaging. This is then often confirmed by biopsy. Based on the finding the tumors are divided into different grades or severity.
Treatment may include some combination of surgery, radiation therapy and chemotherapy. Anticonvulsant medication is needed in those who have a seizure. Dexamethasone and furosemide may be used to decrease swelling around the tumor. Some tumors grow sufficiently slowly that all that is required is keeping an eye on it. Treatments that use a person's immune system are being studied. Outcome varies considerably depending on the type of tumor and how far it has spread at diagnosis. Glioblastomas usually have poor outcomes while meningiomas usually have good outcomes. The average five year survival rate for brain cancer in the United States is 33%.
Secondary or metastatic brain tumors are more common than primary brain tumors, with about half of metastasis coming from lung cancer. Primary brain tumors occur in around 250,000 people a year globally, making up less than 2% of cancers. In children less than 15, brain tumors are second only to acute lymphoblastic leukemia as a cause of cancer. In Australia the average economic costs of a case of brain cancer is $1.9 million, the greatest of any type of cancer.
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