Meningioma Treatment – Meningioma is a brain tumor that originates in the meninges, the layers of tissue that surround and protect the brain. A meningioma tumor is usually benign (noncancerous), but it can occasionally be malignant (cancerous). Meningiomas grow slowly and sometimes invade surrounding brain tissue. A meningioma tumor is the most common type of brain tumor, accounting for about one-third of all brain tumors. Meningiomas occur more commonly in women than in men, and they tend to occur in middle-aged or older adults.
Most meningiomas do not cause symptoms until they become large enough to press on nearby structures in the brain. When symptoms do occur, they may include headache, seizures, vision problems, and weakness or numbness in the arms or legs. Meningiomas are usually diagnosed using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Treatment options for meningiomas include meningioma surgery, radiation therapy, and observation. Meningiomas that cannot get removed with surgery may receive treatment with radiation therapy. Meningiomas that are not causing symptoms and are not growing only require observation. If a person suspects or experiences any meningioma-related symptoms, they should contact their doctor right away.
The cause of meningiomas is unknown. However, there are a few risk factors associated with an increased risk of developing a meningioma. These include:
-Age: Meningiomas are more common in middle-aged or older adults.
-Gender: Meningiomas occur more commonly in women than in men.
-Family history: Having a family member with a meningioma is a weak risk factor for developing the condition.
-Exposure to ionizing radiation: Exposure to ionizing radiation, such as X-rays or radiation therapy, is a vital risk factor for developing a meningioma.
There are three main meningioma types, which are classified based on the location of the tumor:
-Intracranial meningiomas: Meningiomas that occur inside the skull but outside the brain are called intracranial meningiomas. These types make up about 70 percent of all meningiomas.
-Spinal meningiomas: Meningiomas that occur in the spinal cord are called spinal meningiomas. These types make up about 25 percent of all meningiomas.
-Paravertebral (extradural) meningiomas: Meningiomas that occur in the bones surrounding the spinal cord are called paravertebral (extradural) meningiomas. These types make up about 5 percent of all meningiomas.
Most meningiomas do not cause symptoms until they become large enough to press on nearby structures in the brain. When symptoms do occur, they may include:
• Headache: Meningiomas can cause worse headaches at night or lying down, accompanied by nausea, vomiting, or visual disturbances.
• Seizures: Meningiomas can sometimes cause seizures.
• Vision problems: Meningiomas can cause vision problems, such as double vision, blurred vision, or blindness.
• Weakness or numbness in the arms or legs: Meningiomas can cause weakness or numbness in the arms or legs.
Meningioma treatment depends on the size, location, and type of tumor, as well as the patient's age and overall health. Meningiomas that are small and do not cause symptoms only require observation. More significant or symptomatic meningiomas require treatment with surgery, radiation therapy, or both.
• Meningioma Surgery: Meningioma surgery is the most common treatment for this condition. The goal of surgery is to remove as much of the tumor as possible while preserving normal brain tissue. Meningiomaremoval can sometimes be challenging because the tumors are often located near critical structures in the brain, such as the optic nerves or cerebral blood vessels. Meningiomas that cannot be removed entirely may be treated with radiation therapy.
• Radiation Therapy: Radiation therapy is a treatment that uses high-energy beams to kill cancer cells. Radiation therapy can be delivered externally, from a machine outside the body, or internally, from radioactive material placed directly into the tumor (brachytherapy). Radiation therapy is sometimes used to treat meningiomas that cannot be completely removed with surgery or meningiomas that have recurred after surgery.
• Observation: Sometimes, small meningiomas that do not cause symptoms only require observation. Perform an MRI scan every few months to check for any changes in the tumor. Meningiomas that begin to grow or cause symptoms require treatment with surgery or radiation therapy.
The prognosis for meningiomas is generally good. Meningiomas are slow-growing tumors, and most do not cause symptoms until they are large enough to press on nearby structures in the brain. With early diagnosis and treatment, most people with meningiomas can expect a good outcome.