What is it?A meningioma is a tumor that grows in the membrane that covers the brain and the spinal cord. The tumors are generally benign (non-cancerous) and rarely spread to other parts of the central nervous system or body. While it is rare, a meningioma can have malignant (cancerous) features. A meningioma can go unnoticed because of slow growth and could be present for five to 10 years before it is discovered. While a meningioma is classified as a brain tumor, it is located anywhere in the meningeal layer of membrane surrounding the brain within the skull or around the spinal cord. The tumor could surround nerves and blood vessels making treatment difficult. A meningioma is more common in women than men and with patients who are 50 to 70 years old. What are the symptoms?Meningioma symptoms can appear in the form of headaches or seizures or other neurological disorder. Depending on its location, sometimes a bony change in the skull may appear and can be seen on an X-ray.
How is it diagnosed?Neurologic evaluations are performed when a patient has slowly increasing signs of mental dysfunction, new seizures or persistent headaches or if there is evidence of pressure inside the skull (vomiting, swelling or protrusion of the blind spot at the back of the eye). Your neurologist may order an MRI, CT scan, along with chest X-rays in diagnosing a meningioma.
What treatments are offered?Surgery is successful for medium to large sized meningioma brain tumors. However, for meningioma tumors surrounding veins, stereotactic surgery may be used.Learn more about: Brain Tumor Symptoms and DiagnosisBrain Tumor TreatmentCyberKnife