INVC, Chandigarh, “The recurrent headaches that got worse with time could be the symptom of brain tumour. The tumour-related headaches have distinct characteristics that separated them from other conditions that caused headaches. Early morning headaches were an important warning sign and should not be ignored.”
These views shared by Dr Ashish Gupta, Sr. Consultant-Neurosurgery, Max Super Speciality Hospital (MSSH), Mohali while addressing a press conference at Hotel Gaur, Sector 43 here today to mark ‘World Brain Tumour Day’ which falls on June 8.
Explaining about brain tumour related headaches, Dr Nitin Yogesh, Consultant, Neurosurgery, MSSH said that increased intracranial pressure (IICP) was an increased amount of pressure on the brain that could be caused by excess fluid, brain swelling, or a mass which could be a cause of brain tumour. Headaches were generally the initial symptom in a person with brain tumour. Other symptoms like seizures, changes in vision or hearing, giddiness, nausea and vomiting, fit weakness of the arms and legs or cognitive decline were other associated symptoms.”
Describing the typical characteristics of headaches that were common in those with brain tumors, Dr Gupta said that the pain could be described as dull, aching, or throbbing. Over time, the headaches might become more frequent, increasing in severity and eventually be a constant occurrence that was not easily relieved. Changes in body position could make them worse, especially when lying down. They could also be worsened by coughing or sneezing, he maintained.
“A change in headache pattern could be a symptom of a brain tumor. People who didn't commonly get headaches and have had recent headaches, could be a warning sign for doctors to suspect something more serious.”
The primary brain tumors would tend to stay in the brain. They could occur in people of all ages. But these were seen to be more frequent in children and older adults. Metastatic brain tumors were those that would begin as a cancer elsewhere in the body and spread to the brain. These were more common in adults than children, pointed out Dr Yogesh.
Contrary to the popular belief , brain tumors were curable, even malignant tumors could be controlled and cured with timely intervention and treatment, asserted Dr Gupta.