Is headache the first sign of a brain tumor?

Neurosurgery, Manipal Hospital, Kharadi-Pune

PUNE: Headaches are a common symptom experienced by many individuals and can be caused by various factors, including tension, stress, sinus issues, migraines, or other medical conditions. However, in case it becomes persistent in nature, there is a possibility of any major health condition including a brain tumor. According to Dr. Pravin Survashe, Consultant – Neurosurgery, Manipal Hospital, Kharadi-Pune, “Brain tumors are abnormal growth or mass of cells in the brain. It can develop from brain tissue itself or from cells that have spread to the brain from other parts of the body.

While it is true that headaches are one of the most common symptoms associated with brain cancer, they are not always the first indicator. Dr. Pravin further highlights that in the case of brain tumors, headaches are often accompanied by other symptoms that may vary depending on the tumor’s location and size. If left untreated over time, these tumors can lead to severe complications such as permanent neurological damage including difficulty with speech and memory problems.

Common symptoms include headaches, seizures, visual disturbances such as blurred vision or double vision as well as speech difficulties and loss of coordination. In case the person experiences persistent headaches or any other unusual symptoms such as seizures or changes in vision, it’s essential to seek medical attention immediately. Early detection is crucial when dealing with brain tumors since early treatment increases your chances of successful recovery.

In some cases, brain tumors can also cause hormonal imbalances leading to weight gain/loss and changes in menstrual cycles for women. It’s important to note that these symptoms are not exclusive to brain tumors but could be caused by other medical conditions as well.

Dr. Pravin also says that if a person is experiencing any persistent symptoms in daily life, there is an urgent need to seek advice from the doctor who may refer for further investigations such as MRI scans. Early detection ensures better treatment outcomes.

Treatment for a brain tumor may involve surgery if it is accessible; chemotherapy to kill cancer cells through medication; radiation therapy that uses high-energy rays to destroy cancer cells; targeted drug treatment among others.

Photo by Matteo Vistocco on Unsplash


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