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Specific Brain Tumors

Gliomas are divided into types depending on the origin of the glial cells. The most common type of glioma is an astrocytoma.

The World Health Organization (WHO) classification divides astrocytomas into four grades:
  • Grade I Pilocytic Astrocytoma
  • Grade II Low-Grade Astrocytoma
  • Grade III Anaplastic Astrocytoma
  • Grade IV Glioblastoma Multiforme (GBM)


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Less Common Gliomas

  • Brain Stem Glioma
  • Ependymoma
  • Oligodendroglioma
  • Optic Nerve Glioma


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Non-glial brain tumors

  • Acoustic Neuroma
  • Chordoma
  • CNS Lymphoma
  • Craniopharyngioma
  • Hemangioblastoma
  • Medulloblastoma or Primitive Neuroectodermal Tumor (PNET)
  • Meningioma
  • Pineal Tumor
  • Pituitary Tumor
  • Rhabdoid Tumor
  • Schwannoma


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Secondary (metastatic) brain tumors

Cancer cells from other areas of the body, such as the lungs or the breasts, can be spread to the brain through the bloodstream and begin to form a secondary, or metastatic tumor. These types of tumors may require surgery to remove the tumor and radiation or chemotherapy.


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Common symptoms of brain tumors:

The symptoms of brain tumors can vary widely, depending not only on the type of brain tumor, but also on the location of the tumor within the brain and skull. A brain tumor might even be entirely asymptomatic. Some of the more common symptoms are listed here:

  • Headaches, usually worse in the morning.
  • Trouble thinking, impaired judgment, loss of memory, difficulty talking, change in personality or behavior
  • Emotional instability, rapid emotional changes
  • New onset seizures or convulsions causing weakness, numbness, or loss of consciousness
  • Visual problems
  • Hearing loss
  • Paralysis, weakness or decreased sensation on one side of the body
  • Loss of balance, coordination
  • Nausea and or vomiting, usually more severe in the morning
  • Abnormal body growth
  • Abnormal lactation


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