World brain tumor day, Brain tumour, brain health, mental health, health,

The World Brain Tumour Day is observed on June 8 every year since 2000. It has been observed that there is a growth in the prevalence and incidences of brain tumour in India by the National Health Portal (NHP), India and above 500 people get diagnosed with the condition everyday worldwide.

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The combination of technological and medical innovations has helped in the development of treatment options for brain tumour. Keeping this in mind, doctors from Columbia Asia hospitals are raising awareness on the subject on this day.

"Technology has helped in brain tumour surgery by making it more accurate and yield better results. For instance, use of navigation in surgery helps doctor to remove tumour completely. Newer drugs, chemotherapy and latest radiation options like cyber knife and gamma knife has made it better for brain cancer. With the use of a good anaesthesia, doctors can even do surgery while the patient is awake," said Dr Arjun Srivatsa, Senior Consultant – Neurosurgery, Columbia Asia Hospitals, Bengaluru.

Brain tumour can occur at any age and can involve any part of the brain.

"In older people, sudden slowdown of actions can be a warning sign for presence of a brain tumour. Sometimes a stroke can also be a possible symptom of a person suffering from brain tumour," Dr Srivatsa added.

Some of the common symptoms of a brain tumour include:

  • Change in the pattern of headaches
  • Unexplained nausea or vomiting
  • Vision problems such as blurred vision, double vision or peripheral vision
  • Headache and seizures
  • Speech problems or weakness in limbs depending upon the area the tumour involves

A CT scan (computerised tomography) is done to diagnose a brain tumour, followed by an MRI (Magnetic resonance imaging). The latter is generally considered as the gold standard for the diagnosis of brain tumour as it provides accurate details on the tumour.

Dr Arjun Srivatsa, who sees around 200 - 300 cases of brain tumour in a year, stresses the importance of timely treatment and correct medical expertise for the treatment. 

"Any symptom should not be neglected and immediate consultation with an expert should be done without delay," Dr Srivatsa concluded.