Glioma (glioblastoma, astrocytoma): treatment, prognosis
Any tumors located in the brain, most people unfamiliar with the classification relates to cancer. And although the name (cancer) is not quite suitable for tumors in the head, the degree of danger is not reduced by this.
The most common tumor, found a place in one of the structures of the nervous tissue — glial, is the glioma, which is malignant (astrocytoma, glioblastoma, medulloblastoma), and benign (astrocytoma). However, given the localization in such a complex and hard-to-reach place, such as the brain, even the «good» nature of the neoplasia could not promise anything good.
«Why did this happen to me?»
Why are tumors in the head? It is not always possible to find answers to such questions, because even eminent scientists continue to debate on the origin of tumors affecting the system, the task of which is to control all processes occurring in the body. Scientists argue – no consensus. Assume that «life» gives astrocytoma astrocytic Rostock, while oligodendrogliomas have oligodendroglialnah the beginning. This is a classic version of the origin of glial tumors.
It should be noted that some authors disagree with the common opinion and insist on their theory that the perpetrators of the cancer process, developing in the substance of the brain, considers prone to malignancy slowly proliferating cells, initially emerged as a result of genetic mutation. Like it or not – maybe in time science will find the answer, but the tumors are growing today, so doctors around the world are looking for ways of early diagnostics and effective methods of treatment. In addition, the patient with a suspected tumor, focusing on symptoms, constantly thinking, what prospects it has for its elimination, what is the life expectancy of glioma of the brain and whether there is a benign glioma (and maybe he is lucky?).
Neuroectodermal tumor of the brain
That though as-that to facilitate the reader’s perception of complicated medical terminology, which is so full of neurological science, we will try to briefly explain what is a tumor formed from the substance of the brain. Glioma – a tumor of neuroectodermal origin, emerging from glia. Neuroglia (glia) is a community of cells that surround the nervous tissue and help it to fulfill its basic purpose is to generate and transmit nerve impulses. The proportion of cells that creates the conditions for the normal functioning of the nervous system, falls to 40% of all the material enclosed in the skull of man. The cells making up the neuroglia, are derived from glioblastom, however, within populations they are heterogeneous in structure and objectives, so to distinguish:
Ependimotsity that not all authors unanimously take for glial cells, opinions in respect of their membership is divided, therefore, and tumors, who took the start from the data structures do not have a permanent position in the classification of brain tumors;
- Oligodendrocytes (peripheral or Central, cells are more just like);
- Astrocytes constitute a majority in number of glial elements, therefore, deserve special attention in the development of neoplastic processes, called gliomas of the brain.
Astrocytes, mainly by «inhabiting» gray matter, different power branching processes, call them protoplasmic. Other types of astrocytes — fibrous cells, is not peculiar to the enhanced branching processes, and they prefer more white matter in the brain.
Even «good» — relatively
Glioma is the most common of primary brain tumors, it is capable of hitting the Central nervous system (CNS) person of any age, but most tumor «indifferent» to the children and young people. Glioma in children is on the second place after the infamous blood diseases (leukemias) that do not back down and continue to hold a dominant position among the other pediatric pathology.
A large species composition of tumors affecting the Central nervous system, difficulty of diagnosis, especially in the early stages, are an obstacle to the creation of a clear and unambiguous classification. Tumors masked, long do not allow yourself to discover, perched in the most inaccessible places. This behavior of the neoplasm not only casts doubt on the rapid initiation of treatment, but also carrying out diagnostic measures, in particular a biopsy, which is determined by the type of cells «inhabiting» the tumor. Meanwhile, there are signs for the differentiation of cerebral gliomas. Distinguish between them:
Thus, the glial tumors include:
- Benign astrocytoma, although it should be noted, its quality is highly questionable. Diffuse astrocytoma or a tumor that has no clear distinction with the neighboring tissues, not accessible to surgical intervention, which is the main treatment of brain tumors;
- Malignant astrocytoma. If its benign forms it is possible to expect so much evil, then this option is especially dangerous;
- Medulloblastoma is a pretty malignant glioma that affects mostly kids, taking over 20% of all neoplastic processes of the brain. The formation of this variant of glioma in children due to the violation of fetal development at the genetic level;
- Glioblastoma is a malignant «adult» nemetstaticescoy tumor that grows very rapidly becoming complicated by the formation of cysts, hemorrhage, necrosis. The prognosis for life expectancy at the glioma of the brain, referred to this form of tumors, very small – up to 3 months.
In addition, when determining the characteristics of the cancer process in the brain take into account the patient’s age at the time of clinical signs of the tumor, characteristics of its development, a hereditary factor, because every patient with this diagnosis want to know where the tumor is and why it originated.
What is their danger?
The degree of malignancy of gliomas is established by the pathologist in four signs:
- Stage 1 – signs of «evil» in the preparation of neoplasms not observed (some astrocytic tumors);
- Stage 2 defines the concept of «atypia» of course, we are talking about the presence of cells, which began its rebirth;
- Stage 3 — the presence of two signs, but the absence of necrosis;
- 4 the degree is composed of two or three signs, but the word «necrosis» is crucial.
Glioma 1-2 grade tumors usually grow slowly, special do not show aggression, what can be said about fast-growing tumors, which are grade 3-4. Malignant glioma is generally considered one of the «bad» tumors of the brain.
In addition to the degree of malignancy, the danger of the tumor is judged by its localization, because the life expectancy of glioma of the brain, in other cases largely depends on the growth zone.
At the location of the neoplastic lesion are distinguished:
Glioma of brain stem malignant tumor that develops primarily in children (but not early). In addition to this localization (barrel GM), glioma in children often finds a place in the front or rear division of the brain;
Often in the medical sources you can meet such a definition as a glioma of the chiasm. Optic chiasm glioma — a tumor that has taken its development from the glial cells of the chiasm located in the area of the optic chiasm. Because of the proximity of the hypothalamus, which is located above chezmoi, swelling often accompany the symptoms of neuroendocrine disorders. The first signs of the presence of tumors in this region can be attributed to a sharp decline in visual acuity, loss of visual fields, the development of hydrocephalus. This type of tumor, which in most cases is represented astrocytoma, prevails in patients staying in the children’s age, although young adults, people, she, too, is not excluded.
Not looking at what glioma is rare, may not reach large sizes, to grow for many years without metastasis, one should always take into account its propensity to diffuse growth and the ability to choose a comfortable place for themselves, but very «bad» for the doctor and the patient, thus deteriorating the prognosis of the disease. Most tumors of glial, not delimited from the healthy tissues, that is, are diffuse.
Severe pathology with no specific symptoms
The symptoms of the tumor, probably can find everyone in certain periods of life, since clinical manifestations are suitable for many diseases (hypertension, migraine, osteochondrosis of the cervical spine, poisoning, etc.):
- Nausea and vomiting;
- Blurred vision.
Of course, immediately comes to hydrocephalus, seizures and mental disorders, so in the initial stages of the tumor, no one thinks.
Video astrocytoma and common symptoms of brain tumors
If you’re lucky?
The main treatment of glioma is surgical, the success of which depends entirely on the lesion.
Good prognosis you can rely in astrocytoma benign or even malignant glioma, situated in an operable area of the brain.
When the tumor is inaccessible, for example, is localized in the brainstem or along the paths of the optic nerves, neuro-surgical operation can cause damage to healthy parts of the brain, resulting in various unwanted consequences. In such cases, use alternative therapies: the stereotactic radiation surgery, radiosurgery, the combination of chemotherapy and radiation therapy and other methods of influence on tumor process. However, it should be noted that radiotherapy is contraindicated in the treatment of gliomas in children under 3 years of age. That is, it is necessary to wait until the kid grows up.
If the tumor is not growing, shows no signs of aggression and allows neurooncology to wait, the operation is delayed, but the constant monitoring of the patient is maintained. In General, the choice of treatment of a brain tumor in each case is made individually. And not only your doctor. Tactics of conducting the patient always developed with consultation of experts in this field, the responsibility of which neither the patient nor his relatives should have any doubt. The main thing – to trust the professionals.