Brain tumor, hydrocephalus, headache

Each cell in our body regenerates through mitosis. Old cells die and new cell formation take place. There is a sequence of cell death and cell regeneration. But abnormal, unregulated, unwanted, uncontrolled growth of cell is called tumor. Tumor originates from a single cell but this cell replicates and makes million and trillions of copies. Cell replication continues and size of tumor increases.

Types of tumors?

There are two types of tumors Benign and malignant tumor. Benign tumors affect a particular body part and are localized. Malignant tumors sheds off from their origin and spreads throughout the body and replicates there. Malignant tumors cause cancer.

brain tumor

Intracranial brain Tumor:

Meningioma:

Meninges are thin coverings of brain. If any cell there replicates abnormally. It will cause tumor of meninges called meningioma. Brain contains neurons, myelin sheath, oligodendrocytes. cerebellum and brainstem any cell there can start uncontrolled replication and may cause cancer there. In brain tumors intracranial pressure or pressure of CSF increases due to the compression of surrounding areas by tumor. Circulation of CSF is impaired.

Osteocytes are the cells and their tumor is called osteoma. Tumor of oligodendrocytes is called oligodendroglioma. Ependym are the CSF producing cells in brain, and tumor is called ependymoma. Tumor of neurons is called neuroma. Tumor of pituitary gland is known as pituitary adenoma.

Signs & symptoms:

Patient might complain the following symptoms:

  • head ache
  • Early morning vomiting
  • Early morning head ache
  • Fits
  • Pain of that area
  • Impaired function of this area
  • Vision problems
  • Fever

Examination & Treatment:

CT scan or MRI is performed as confirmatory tests. CT scan or MRI do not identify the type of tumor. To identify the type of tumor neuro surgeons performs burr hole craniotomy for biopsy. Biopsy is investigated under lab to identify the type of tumor.

  • Chemotherapy
  • Radiotherapy
  • Surgical intervention

Hydrocephalus

Increased level of cerebrospinal fluid in brain is called hydrocephalus. If blockage of draining sites occur intracranial pressure increases causing hydrocephalus. There might be two causes of hydrocephalus either increased production of CSF due to inflammation or decreased drainage of CSF. CSF formation take place in lateral ventricle. Ependym cells are responsible for the formation of CSF. Brain have a sequential circulation process. CSF moves from ependym cells to third and fourth ventricle and then inside spinal cord and after that get absorbed into blood. This CSF circulation is confined to brain. The normal value of CSF is 150ml.

Examination & Treatment:

CT scan is performed as a confirmatory test. In case of hydrocephalus CT scan shows dilated ventricles due to increased CSF. To drain excess CSF shunt is inserted from ventricle to peritoneum. This shunt drains excess fluid from brain ventricles to peritoneum, and here it get absorbed.

Headache

There are some common types of headache which do not carries severe neurological symptoms. These are benign headaches including cluster headache, migraine, depression headache. Migraine is common of all. In migraine abnormal contractions and dilatations of vessels occur. It is unilateral headache. Patient complains vomiting, pounding of head.

Examination & Treatment:

CT scan is not required symptoms are enough to confirm migraine. NSAID’s, calcium channel blockers, beta blockers or epileptic medicines (valproic acid) are prescribed. These medications prevent abnormal contraction and dilatation of vessels. To treat cluster headache along with analgesics, antihistamines are also prescribed.


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