Looking At Brain Tumors Psychology Essay

Brain tumors are a very harmful diagnoses that can completely change a persons everyday lifestyle. It could change their lifestyle because, the symptoms that come with brain tumors. Also, it can cause personality changes and certain types of body reactions. This illness has a major effect to the patient and can also effect the family. How the brain tumor occurs is when abnormal growth of cells that are forming together. When the cells form together then it can cause a mass of tumor. There are many different types of brain tumors that exist; about 120 types that can affect a human being. Primary and secondary brain tumors can be either malignant or benign. They are also classified in different types of grades, from one to four. They rate the grades from lowest risk to highest risk, one being low risk and four being a higher risk. People that are affected by this diagnosis can cause visual, speech, and hearing change, memory problems, balance and walking problems, etc. When being diagnosis with brain tumor, there are treatments that can help fighting off the disease. The treatments depend on the type of the tumor, but it usually involves with radiation, surgery, and chemotherapy. Brain tumors are a very difficult process that can change everything about a person, or it could even be life threatening to them.

The way tumors develop is when cells grow old, have damage, or die off, the body is supposed to form new cells to replace them.

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During this process certain problems can occur and the body doesn’t need the new cells, also the old and damaged cells don’t die off when they should be. When this happens the cells will build up forming a mass of tumor, also called the growth of tumors (-oma, tumor) and (oncoma, mass tumor). A brain tumor is a mass of abnormal tissue growing in any part of the brain. Brain cells multiply in an uncontrolled manner and forms these tumors. These tumors can arise from any part of the brain, spinal cord or the nerves. Broadly these tumors can be divided into benign and malignant tumors (Thakur, Gahane, Bhadoriya, Jain S., Jain R., &Mishra). Malignant can form cancer that can spread throughout the body, while benign doesn’t form any type of cancer or even spread to other parts of the body. Benign tumors has a border edge that the cells barley invade the tissue surrounding them. The possibility for benign to spread to other parts of the body is very slim. The only cause of serious health issue is when the tumor presses on sensitive areas of the brain. A benign tumor can be removed, but they can also grow back. Sometimes a benign tumor can change into a malignant tumor. A malignant tumor can also be called brain cancer. Malignant is way more serious than benign and can also be life threatening. When a malignant tumor is forming it can rapidly grow causing damage to healthy brain tissues. Unlike benign, malignant can break away and spread to other parts of the body. The main parts would be the spinal cord or even other parts in the brain.

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When dealing with tumors, there are different types of grades that they fall into. The grades are classified from 1 through 4, lowest risk to the highest risk. Grade 1 is normally a benign tumor that grows slowly. A grade 2 is a malignant tumor that has cells that look very different from the grade 1 cells. The third grade is also a malignant tumor that usually anaplastic abnormal cells. The final Grade is a malignant tissue that is in its worst condition. Grade 4 malignant tend to grow very fast when it occurs. Using these terms and definitions will help physicians diagnose people with these types of health problems.

When diagnosing, physicians can tell a brain tumor by the way the cells look under a microscope. Brain tumors are often diagnosed on the basis of imaging and processing methods. Generically, the imaging of brain tumors aim to determine the localization, extend, type and malignancy of the pathology (Cruz-Barbosa & Vellido). Imaging evaluation includes computer tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) that complement each other and describe the tumor location, local extension, compression in the neighborhood structures, superjacent hydrocephalus. Position emission tomography can differentiate recurrent tumor necrosis postoperative scarring or post-therapy edema (Clobanu, Miron, Tansanu, Dumitrescu & Indrei). Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) is a common data acquisition technique for

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this task (Cruz-Barbosa & Velliod). These procedures can help the physicians tell that there is a mass of tumor in the brain. It can also show what part of the brain the tumor is occurring and, what kind of tumor it may be.

Following the symptoms will help physicians know if their patient is occurring a brain tumor. Usually, the symptoms depend on their type, size, aggressiveness, and the location the tumor is in the brain. There are many different types of symptoms for certain types of tumors. The most common symptoms for brain tumor would usually be headaches, memory problems, numbness or tingling in certain parts of the body like the legs or arms. Other symptoms are walking and balancing problems, vomiting, seizures, personality change, and can also affect their vision, speech, and hearing. After many tests were taken to figure out the cause of brain tumors, there were no evidences that could support the exact cause. Even though there are no evidences for the exact cause, brain tumors can occur at any age. There are certain types of tumors that fall into the children and adult categories. In the field of brain tumors there are over 120 types of brain tumors that occur in different size and location of the brain. In oncology, this typically involves differentiating between tumor types and grades, or some type of discrete outcome prediction (Cruz-Barbosa & Vellido). Some types of brain tumors that differ from one

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another are Ependymomas, Optic Neuroma (adults), Pituitary Tumor, Craniopharyngioma, Pediatric Brain Tumor, Astrocytoma (adults), Rhabiod Tumor, Meningioma (adults), Brain Stem Glioma, etc. In adults, the most common types of brain tumors would be Astrocytoma, Meningoma, and also Oligodendroglioma. In adults about half of all CNS tumors are malignant, whereas in pediatric patients; more than 75% are malignant (Khoshnevisan). The most common tumors in children would be Ependyoma, Medulloblastoma, grade 1 or 2 Astrocytoma, and also Brain Stem Glioma. When a person is diagnosed with a certain type of brain tumor then this will help them go to the next step, which is treatment.

Treatments are the first thing to do when a person is diagnosed. Just like symptoms, treatment also depends on the type, size, and location of the tumor. Treatment also depends on the age and health of the patient. When treating for brain tumors, they usually go straight to removal surgery (-ectomy), that surgically removes the tumor from the brain. If this procedure is not successful then they go to the next step which is radiation therapy, and chemotherapy (chemo-, drug, -therapy, treatment), which means drug treatment. For example, in chemotherapy there is a drug to fight off brain tumors that can go through the Blood-brain barriers (BBB). Major obstacles for brain tumor treatment including the structure of BBB and efflux transporters, and the efforts that have been used to circumvent BBB

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and deliver drugs in the brain. In brain tumors, the delivery of anticancer drug is difficult due to presence of the BBB, which acts as physical and physiologic obstacles for delivery of drugs to the brain. Also, cancer chemotherapy is useful for a variety of brain tumors including Lymphomas, Medulloblastomas, Germ Cell Tumors, and Gliomas (Thakur, Gahane, Bhadoriya, Jain S., Jain R., & Mishra). Due to the treatments, they always form a high or low risk factor. One of the risk factors a patient can go through is ionizing radiation because, of the high doses of x-rays. Ionizing radiation it directly to the head and a high dose of x-rays increases the risk for affecting the patient. No matter what are always risks when treating a illness.

This diagnosis is very important to me because it relates to my little niece. Her name is Cassandra, she is 15 right now and I love her more than anything in the world. We didn’t find out that she had a brain tumor until she was 3 years old. The type of brain tumor she has is Craniopharyngioma, which is a benign tumor that develops near the pituitary gland. When the pituitary gland hormone is damaged it imbalances and leads to excessive thirst, excessive urination, and stunt growth. This type of brain tumor can also damage the optic nerves that can cause visual problems, and have a possibility to increase after surgery. We were very heart broken when our family found out that my niece had a brain tumor. The first thing they tried

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to do was removal surgery, which was not a success. Removal surgery did not work because they could only take some parts of the tumor out. If they do the procedure and took the whole tumor out, then she would be completely blind. They tried many ways to remove this tumor without the risk factor of becoming blind but they just couldn’t do it. When they removed some of the brain tumor, it caused her to be blind in her left eye. She is much smaller than her normal group age, so the brain tumor did affect her stunt growth. After knowing this, we knew that her tumor would just keep growing for the rest of her life. Every time the tumor grows, she has to go to surgery and only take some of the brain tumor out. To help fight off the brain tumor from growing she takes chemotherapy. My niece went through so many surgeries throughout her life that we just couldn’t keep count of them anymore. It hurts me that my niece has to go through hell every time her tumor grows back. She went through so much surgery that she had to wear helmets to protect the part where the skull was removed. Also, they went through her skull so much that they can’t do surgery there anymore. They tried do the procedure in other ways like the nostril but her nose was too small. Her last surgery was probably 5 to 6 months ago, so eventually her tumor will be growing back soon. To keep her positive and everyone else position every year we go to the Ride for Kids, which is when hundreds of people come together with their motorcycles and ride for the kids that have brain tumors. We always ride on the motorcycles at

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the event and at the end; we do a fundraiser to help find a way to overcome this disease. My niece is doing a lot better now that she is older, she is going to Rome Free Academy, and she is in variety cheerleading for RFA. I know my niece has been through a lot but no matter what our family will always be by her side.

From my personal experiences, brains tumors can affect the patient emotionally and physically and can also emotionally affect the family. Brain tumors can be very harmful and can ruin everything from health to personalities, and daily routines. If nothing went wrong when the body forms new cells or removes the old and damaged cells, then it would not cause a mass of tumor. Brain tumors can physically affect a person by different types of symptoms. Identify the tumor and the type of tumor can help many patients take care of this disease. Most of the time removal surgery will solve the problem but, if not the health care field tries to find other ways to destroy certain types of brain tumors. It all depends on what type of brain tumor it is, the size, and the location the tumor is occurring. When being diagnosis with brain tumors there are many obstacles that you have to go through in order to stop the tumor from increasing. There are many difficult processes and effects that can take toll on a person with this illness. This certain type of disease can be life threatening

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and, can a change a person’s all around life.

Work Cited

Ciobanu, A., Miron, I., Tansanu, I. I., Dumitrescu, G., & Indrei,


PROGNOSTIC FACTORS.Romanian Journal Of Functional & Clinical,

Macro- & Microscopical Anatomy & Of Anthropology /Revista

Romana De Anatomie Functionala Si Clinica, Macro Si

Microscopica Si De Antropologie, 10(4), 499-503.




Journal Of Neural Systems, 21(1), 17-29.

Khoshnevisan, A. (2012). An overview of therapeutic approaches to

brain tumor stem cells.Medical Journal Of The Islamic Republic

Of Iran, 26(1), 31-40.

Thakur, A., Gahane, A., Bhadoriya, S., Jain, S., Jain, R., & Mishra,

H. (2011). Major hurdles for brain tumour therapy and the ways

to overcome them: A review. Journal Of Pharmacy Research,

4(5), 1315-1318.

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