Brain cancer symptoms are classified as specific or non-specific. Signs from the first group may indicate an oncological process in the brain, while symptoms related to the second group are common for malignant tumors, regardless of their type and location.
Non-specific signs of brain cancer include: unexplained progressive weight loss, deterioration in well-being, fatigue, and loss of strength. Often these signs are taken for manifestations of a non-dangerous disease, chronic fatigue or hypovitaminosis.
Specific signs of brain cancer, in turn, are divided into focal, depending on the location of the tumor, and cerebral, due to the development of an oncological process in the brain, compression of brain tissue by the tumor and an increase in intracranial pressure.
The most common cerebral symptom is headache. It is observed in about half of patients, it is not stopped by the usual drugs, it can worsen when the head is tilted, coughing or sneezing, often depends on the time of day (it gets worse in the morning and weaken in the evening). Over time, attacks become more frequent, as the disease progresses, the pain becomes permanent.
Also, the general brain signs of cancer include: dizziness, regardless of body position, drowsiness, nausea and vomiting for no other reason. In this case, relief after vomiting does not occur. Violation of cerebral circulation leads to visual impairment.
The nature and severity of focal symptoms depend on where the neoplasm is located, and how severely certain brain structures are affected. So, with damage to the cerebellum, there is a deterioration in coordination, unsteadiness of gait, when a tumor is located in the pituitary gland or hypothalamus, endocrine disorders are possible.
Also, focal symptoms include visual and hearing impairment arising from the localization of a tumor in the area of the optic or auditory nerves, epileptic seizures due to constant irritation of the cerebral cortex, impaired sensitivity of skin receptors (patients lose the ability to feel heat, cold, pain), attacks of aggression or apathy …
Suspicions of brain cancer can arise if a patient has a long-term decrease in the ability to concentrate, memory disorders, or impaired speech perception. There are hallucinations caused by the tumor process, mental disorders, paralysis, convulsions.
Brain cancer signs do not appear overnight. The disease develops gradually, its first manifestations are often ignored or mistaken for symptoms of other diseases. Headache can be both an early sign of cancer and appear at a late stage of the disease, most of the other symptoms become pronounced already when the tumor reaches a significant size, which significantly complicates the timely diagnosis.