What is a glioma of the brain?
Glioma is a type of brain tumor that develops in the brain and spinal cord. These tumors appear in the viscous support that surrounds nerve cells and helps them function. Within their classification, they are divided into the type of cell they affect and depending on the genetic characteristics of the tumor. According to this classification, there are three types of gliomas:
Prognosis of the disease
The prognosis of gliomas is good if they are treated early and are small. Larger gliomas have a worse prognosis, as treatment may take longer.
The prognosis of gliomas is good if they are treated early and are small.
Symptoms of gliomas in the brain
Symptoms may vary depending on the type of tumor, size, location and speed of growth. The most common include:
- Nausea and vomiting
- Memory loss
- Personality changes
- Urinary incontinence
- Vision problems
- Speech difficulties
- Decreased brain capacity
Medical tests for brain gliomas
The neurology specialist will perform an examination and blood tests. In addition, the following tests may be ordered:
- Neurological examination to evaluate hearing, balance, coordination, strength and reflexes. If problems are detected in any of these areas, the area of the brain affected by the tumor may be assessed.
- Imaging tests such as MRI to diagnose brain tumors.
- Tests to detect tumors in other parts of the body.
- Biopsy of abnormal tissue
What are the causes of brain gliomas?
The causes of a glioma are unknown, although there are risk factors that may increase the chances of developing a glioma. Some of these factors are: age, radiation exposure and family history of glioma.
Can it be prevented?
It is not possible to prevent brain tumors; there are no measures that can prevent them. However, it is recommended to avoid unnecessary radiation and contact with chemical substances, to follow a varied diet and to practice regular exercise.
Treatments for brain gliomas
Treatment for glioma will depend on the type, size, location and condition of the patient, age, state of health, etc. In addition to the removal measures, the specialist may recommend taking some type of medication to reduce the symptoms of the tumor. The most common treatments for this type of tumor are:
- Surgery to remove the tumor as far as possible. When the tumor is small it is easy to remove because it can be easily separated from the brain tissue. In some cases, when the tumor is close to the nerves connected to the eye, it is more complicated as it involves a risk of vision loss.
- Radiation therapy is the next step after surgery, especially in large gliomas.
- Chemotherapy uses drugs to kill cancer cells. They can be given orally or intravenously.
- Drug therapy targets specific abnormalities within the cancer cells.
What specialist treats it?
The specialist who treats this pathology is the neurologist.