Meningioma is a type of tumor that comes from the membranes surrounding your brain and spinal cord, called meninges. Most meningiomas are benign, or noncancerous, though occasionally someone will have cancerous meningiomas. They may also be classified as atypical, which means they aren’t benign or malignant but a little of both. Meningioma is more common in older women, though men and children can also get it and doesn’t always need treatment right away.
Symptoms of Meningioma
The signs and symptoms of meningioma usually start gradual and can be very subtle, and hardly noticeable. The exact symptoms experienced depend where in the brine or spine the tumor is located. Possible symptoms of meningioma include headaches that gradually get worse, changes in vision, hearing loss, memory loss, seizures, and weakness in the arms or legs. In most cases, you won’t need emergency medical care. However, you should seek immediate attention if you have sudden onset of seizures or sudden changes in your memory or vision.
Causes of Meningioma
There is no single cause of meningioma, rather doctors understand there is something that alters the meningenes cells and possibly lead to the infection. Risk factors for meningioma include anyone who has had radiation treatment, women since they get it more often than men, and having an inherited nervous system disorder such as neurofibromatosis type 2.
If you have any of the common signs and symptoms of meningioma, you should call your doctor. He or she will perform a physical exam, go over your medical history and ask about the things you have been experiencing. Tests will then be performed to look for the infection in your brain. The main way to diagnose a meningioma is through an imaging test such as a CT scan of the brain and head or an MRI of the brain to look for certain structures similar of a meningioma.
The course of treatment will depend on the size of the infection or tumor and how aggressive it is, based on the signs and symptoms currently experienced. Some people who are diagnosed with a meningioma doesn’t need immediate treatment as the small, slow-growing forms aren’t in need of treatment right away because they aren’t aggressive. Possible treatments include surgery, medications, radiation therapy, or radiosurgery. No visible tumor means you don’t need any treatment, if your tumor is benign, you will need radiation therapy, as well as malignant tumors.