Brain meningiomas are typically slow-growing tumors that arise from the meninges, the layers of tissue covering the brain and spinal cord. These tumors are usually benign, meaning they are non-cancerous, but their location can impact surrounding brain structures, leading to neurological symptoms. Meningiomas are more common in women and often manifest in middle age or later.
The diagnosis of a brain meningioma usually involves imaging studies such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) or computed tomography (CT) scans. These imaging techniques help determine the size, location, and characteristics of the tumor. In many cases, brain meningiomas may be asymptomatic and discovered incidentally during imaging for unrelated issues. However, when symptoms occur, they can include headaches, seizures, changes in vision, and neurological deficits, depending on the tumor’s location.
Treatment strategies for brain meningiomas vary based on factors such as the tumor’s size, location, and the patient’s overall health. Observation, especially for small and asymptomatic tumors, may be a suitable approach. However, if the meningioma causes symptoms or exhibits aggressive behavior, treatment options include surgery, radiation therapy, or a combination of both. Surgical removal, otherwise known as a craniotomy, is often the primary treatment, aiming to excise the tumor and, in most cases, alleviate symptoms. Radiation therapy may be used as an alternative or adjunctive treatment, particularly when complete surgical removal is challenging or when dealing with recurrent or residual tumors. Occasionally, cerebral angiography and preoperative embolization of the meningioma may be indicated in an attempt to decrease the blood supply to the tumor and risk of bleeding during surgical removal.
The decision-making process for brain meningioma treatment involves a collaborative effort between the patient and their neurosurgeon. The goal is to balance the potential benefits of treatment, such as symptom relief and prevention of tumor growth, with the risks and potential complications associated with surgery or radiation.
Post-treatment care involves close monitoring to assess the effectiveness of the intervention and to detect any recurrence or new growth of the tumor. Additionally, ongoing follow-up may include imaging studies and neurological evaluations to ensure the patient’s well-being and address any potential complications.
Advancements in imaging technology, surgical techniques, and radiation therapy continue to shape the landscape of brain meningioma treatment. The field is also exploring targeted therapies and molecular profiling to develop more personalized and effective treatment approaches. Your neurosurgeons at Coaxial Neurosurgical Specialists are committed to tailoring interventions to the individual patient needs, providing hope for improved outcomes, and enhance the quality of life for those affected by brain meningiomas.