Before Brain Tumor Diagnosis

signs and symptoms of a brain tumor

If you suspect you may have a brain tumor, you are probably experiencing some unpleasant symptoms. Here are some of the most common symptoms:

  • Headaches
  • Seizures¬†
  • Difficulty thinking and/or speaking
  • Changes in personality
  • Tingling on one side of the body
  • Stiffness on one side of the body
  • Loss of balance
  • Change in vision
  • Memory loss
  • Nausea
  • Disorientation
  • Fatigue and muscle weakness
  • Anxiety / depression

How to help when someone is having a seizure

Seizures are a sudden attack or convulsion caused by abnormal burst of electricity in the brain. Signs can range from muscle contractions, to staring, to loss of consciousness.

  • Stay with them and allow the seizure to pass (a few seconds or a few minutes)
  • Loosen any tight clothing if possible and make sure they are breathing
  • Try to cushion harmful objects to prevent injury while convulsing
  • DO NOT put anything in their mouth
  • Call for emergency help if the seizure lasts longer than 5 minutes, if a second seizure immediately follows, or if they are injured or not breathing

Consulting a Healthcare Provider

Make an appointment with your healthcare provider if you have persistent symptoms that are concerning you. If you suspect a brain tumor, it is best to see a provider as soon as possible to confirm or rule out a diagnosis.

TUMOR TIP

Having a journal of the symptoms you have been experiencing, including frequency and time frame, can help your provider better diagnose you. Aim to bring your notes to appointments to help you remember everything you would like to discuss. Download our Symptom Tracker to bring with you to your appointment.

Location Matters:

The symptoms you are experiencing are linked to the location of the tumor in your brain. As your tumor grows, it can press on surrounding tissue, affecting the function controlled by that part of the brain. If you are diagnosed with a brain tumor, make sure your provider helps you understand where it is located. This can help you prepare for and manage symptoms.

 

Location Common Symptoms
Frontal Lobe
  • Personality changes
  • Increased aggression and/or irritation
  • Apathy
  • Weakness on one side of the body
  • Loss of smell
  • Difficulty walking
  • Vision / Speech problems
Temporal Lobe
  • Forgetting words
  • Short-term memory loss
  • Seizures (often associated with strange smells/feelings)
Parietal Lobe
  • Difficulty speaking / understanding
  • Problems reading/writing
  • Loss of feeling in part of the body
Occipital Lobe
  • Issues with sight
Cerebellum
  • Issues with coordination
  • Uncontrolled eye movement
  • Nausea/Vomiting
  • Neck Stiffness
  • Dizziness
Brain Stem
  • Issues with coordination
  • Eyelid or mouth drooping on one side
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Difficulty speaking
  • Double Vision
Spinal Cord
  • Pain
  • Numbness
  • Weakness in legs/arms
  • Loss of bladder/bowel control
  • Difficulty walking
Pituitary Gland
  • Lack of energy
  • Weight gain
  • Mood Swings
  • High blood pressure
  • Diabetes
  • Enlarged hands/feet
  • (Women) Irregular/Infrequent Periods
  • Infertility / Impotence
Meninges
  • Headache
  • Nausea/Vomiting
  • Sight Problems
  • Neck Pain