Meningioma is a type of brain tumor. It develops in the meninges, which is the membrane that covers the brain and the spinal cord. Meningioma is not dangerous in the initial stage, but can be harmful if it grows in size. About 90% of the meningioma tumors are benign or non cancerous and 2% are malignant or cancerous. These type of brain tumors are more frequently observed in women than men and can be found in any age group. It is a result of unusual growth or multiplication of cells in a particular area of the membrane. The meningioma symptoms are usually not noticeable in the early stage and are only diagnosed when the symptoms become very prominent.
Symptoms of Meningioma
Meningioma tumors are usually harmless but if their increased size starts putting pressure on the nearby nerves and tissues, then it may lead to life-threatening conditions. This type of tumor can be divided into two types: slow growing and fast growing. They can be found in one or multiple sites. The tumor may develop in different parts of the membrane and hence the symptoms may also vary from person to person. It may also vary on the basis of the location of its occurrence. Following are some of the symptoms according to the location where these tumors are found.
This type of brain tumor is basically found in the membrane which is present behind the eyes. About 20% of the meningioma are found in this place. The tumor developed in such areas hinders the blood flow to the face and brain and hence most of the symptoms are noticed in the face. The symptoms associated with it are blurred vision, problem in viewing both near and distant objects, numbness in face, loss of sensation etc.
These tumors are found in the brain membrane and hence these brain meningioma symptoms are associated with the front portion of the brain. The tumors in such areas are observed when they grow quite big. Some of its symptoms may be headaches, seizures, mental changes, loss of concentration and problems in focusing and taking decisions. The tumor may also hamper the speech and ability to write.
Posterior Fossa Meningioma
Nearly 10% of meningioma comes under this category. It is associated with the bottom surface of the brain. There are many symptoms which are associated with this location. Posterior fossa symptoms may be loss of hearing, difficulty in swallowing, headache, sharp pain or numbness in face, etc. It may result in loss of balance which cause trouble in walking and performing tasks. These symptoms are caused due to the pressure on the cranial nerves.
Olfactory Groove Meningioma
These tumors are found in the area between the brain and nose. These tumors can harm the sense of smell and can also put pressure on the optical nerves located near the face which may result in problems with the sight of the person. He or she may observe problems in visualizing things or may even turn blind. If the tumor is not treated in time, the tumor may result in a disturbed mental condition, personality change, irritability, etc.
Falx and Parasagittal Meningioma
Most of the meningioma tumors are found in this location. This is the tumor which is found in the path of the blood vessel and affects their functioning. The most common brain tumor symptom observed in this type is weakness in legs.
As we know that this tumor is found in the membrane which covers the brain and spinal cord, the symptoms of spinal meningioma are a bit different from the brain meningioma. The person who is affected with this meningioma may experience back pain and pain in limbs and sometimes in the chest. As the tumor grows in size, the pain gets severe.
Cavernous Sinus Meningioma
Cavernous is a pocket like structure which collects the blood drained by the brain, face and eyes and the tumor found in this place is known as cavernous sinus meningioma. Hence the symptoms of cavernous sinus meningioma are mostly related to the eyes. Some of them are blurred vision, redness in eye, pain behind the eye, bulging of eye, difficulty in eye movements etc.
The above given meningioma symptoms are very specific to their location. Usually they are not harmful. Hence, you may not need any treatment but if you know that you have a meningioma tumor then you need to go for a regular check up so as to monitor its growth. If it is increasing in size then the doctor may advise surgery, which is very effective and usually successful. You may also be prescribed radiation therapy or radio surgery. The therapies and surgeries are safe and help you get rid of the tumors very fast.