Brain tumor

Types of brain tumor

[ Different types of tumor develop in different places ]

Brain and cerebral neurons: A

The brain is composed of neurons and glial cells (which hold the neurons together, anchoring and supporting them). Most tumors in the brain arise from glial cells. This group of tumors is known to include different types, ranging from relatively benign to extremely malignant. They can develop in any part of the brain.

>> See Glioma

See Figure

Cranial nerves: B

The 12 pairs of cranial nerves that exit directly from the brain (controlling smell, the eyes, face, ears, tongue, and functions from the tongue to the throat) are also made up of neurons and cells that form a protective cover, just like an everyday electric cable. Almost all tumors that occur in these cranial nerves also arise from these sheath cells, and tend to be relatively benign. Many patients undergo treatment for tumor of the acoustic nerve.

>> See Acoustic Neuroma

See Figure

Membranes protecting the brain: C

Tumors can also arise from the membranes that protect the brain, known collectively as the meninges; these tumors are called meningiomas. They can arise at any location on the inside of the skull, and comprise a range of types (from benign to malignant).

>> See Meningioma

See Figure

Pituitary: D

The pituitary, located on the undersurface of the brain, is the center that controls the body's hormonal balance and is also called the hypophysis. Tumors that arise here are known as pituitary tumors.

>> See pituitary adenoma

See Figure


There are also conditions in which cells that were present when the brain was formed persist and become tumorous, frequently within structures in the central part of the brain or above its central axis. Malignant tumors (cancer) elsewhere in the body may also spread to the brain, in which case they can arise in any part of the brain, with multiple tumors not uncommon.

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