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Brain tumors and you. What this neurosurgeon wants you to know

Earlier this month, anchor and former NFL star Michael Strahan announced on “Good Morning America,” that his 19-year-old daughter has been undergoing treatment for a brain tumor.

Several other notable celebrities have been public with their own brain tumor diagnoses over the years, using their platforms to raise awareness. Sen. John McCain famously battled glioblastoma, an aggressive form of brain cancer. Actress Shannen Doherty recently disclosed she was dealing with metastatic brain tumors from her breast cancer and Sheryl Crow, the Grammy-winning singer, had a benign brain tumor removed. These public figures, who courageously chose to share their experiences, not only humanize the struggle with brain tumors but also emphasize the importance of early detection.

Brain tumors can be a daunting health concern, impacting people across all walks of life.

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As a neurosurgeon, I have treated various forms of brain tumors in people of all age groups, and I can tell you, early detection matters.

Because of this, it’s crucial to raise awareness about the signs and symptoms associated with brain tumors.

One of the primary signs of a brain tumor can be persistent headaches that are not alleviated by common remedies. These headaches might be accompanied by other symptoms such as vision changes, difficulty speaking, or unexplained mood swings. While these signs don’t necessarily indicate a brain tumor, they warrant attention and prompt medical evaluation.

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Another red flag is seizures, especially if they occur suddenly in people without a history of epilepsy. Seizures can manifest in various ways, from mild muscle twitches to full-blown convulsions.

Cognitive changes, like memory loss or difficulty concentrating, could also be indicative of an issue. It’s important to differentiate between normal forgetfulness and persistent cognitive decline, which may warrant medical investigation.

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The prevalence of brain tumors can vary depending on factors such as age, gender, genetics, and environmental influences. 

While malignant (cancerous) primary brain tumors remain relatively uncommon (less than 1% lifetime risk), metastatic tumors from cancers elsewhere in the body and benign brain tumors are more prevalent.

Early detection of cancer of all types as well as recognizing early neurological change play vital roles in the successful management of brain tumors. Regular medical check-ups, cancer screenings, and being proactive about seeking medical advice concerning symptoms are crucial steps in early detection of all medical illnesses, not just brain tumors. 

If you haven’t scheduled your 2024 checkup, maybe it’s time. 

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE FROM DR. PAUL SAPHIER

Source – https://www.foxnews.com/opinion/brain-tumors-neurosurgeon-wants-know