Main Article on Brain Cancer Question: What were the symptoms of your brain cancer? Submit Your Comment Comment from: Greg, 55-64 Male (Caregiver) Published: December 15 Just 8 weeks from diagnosis of brain cancer to passing away. No symptoms. No sick days from work, he came home from work feeling symptoms of flu. Within 1 hour, seizure, CT scan, and MRI. Healthy, fit, a nonsmoker, he was an intensive care paramedic. After the initial seizure, 7 weeks later intense pain behind right eye, a week in a coma until passing away. The tumor was integrated throughout the brain and very aggressive. Comment from: Bob, 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: November 11 I was diagnosed at age 44 with stage II brain cancer after losing coordination of my left side motor skills and having a seizure. The tumor was removed and I underwent radiation and chemotherapy. Things went back to normal for a couple of years until small seizures and signs of a small tumor reappeared (via MRI). Upon my second operation at age 48 I was diagnosed as having stage III (anaplastic astrocytoma). I again went through radiation and chemotherapy. Things were fine for about 6 months and then I started losing my left motor skills again. Things have stabilized, but have not returned to normal after extensive therapy. I do continue to work and drive. Best of all I just remarried and have returned from my honeymoon in Bermuda. While life (my body and mind) will not be the same I do find ways to survive. I am currently 51 and am on a maintenance drug called Avastin. While it does not attack cancer, it does prevent a tumor from re-growing so far. Comment from: Alex , 19-24 Male (Patient) Published: July 24 I'm 22 now and a little over a year ago I was having strange pain and sensations in my head. I went to my primary doctor and she ran a neurological field test on me and said everything was fine and looked normal. I insisted on an MRI. She scheduled me one at a local hospital. I went alone because both my mom and dad told me the test was completely unnecessary. To my surprise they found a benign tumor on the left side of my brain stem. Luckily it didn't need to be removed. Comment from: jaybee, 75 or over Female (Caregiver) Published: February 04 The nice lady I look after 24 hours a day has some not so great symptoms of brain cancer. Her eye gets puffy, she feels like her one side of her head has a great deal of pressure, and there was a slight numbness. Her doctor does not take her seriously because of her age maybe. I will say to everyone out there if your doctor sends you home without checking out your symptoms and you find you have brain cancer, please take action against these doctors, this will be the only way doctors will thoroughly check a patient out, instead of hustling the patient out of the room as fast as possible. Comment from: brklyrswife, 55-64 Male (Caregiver) Published: May 17 My husband age 57 never sick in his life. One day his right side face drooped, then speech started to go the next day we thought it was a mini stroke. He went for MRI then like a whirl wind he was scheduled for biopsy. The say before biopsy he could no longer sign his name with his right hand. They found PCNS Lymphoma B-Cell cancer in the frontal lobe of his brain. 4 session of methotrexate chemo and following up with radiation. So far his drooping face almost back to normal, speech is better and can sign his name again. Comment from: sel-b21, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: March 02 I was born with a tumor on my right side temple and for months now I have been having headaches. I take pills for tension headaches 1000 mg and they still don't help. They said that it would never return, it wasn't cancerous but I'm still very concerned. I have been to the emergency room due to neck stiffness and headaches and at that time doctor told me that it was neck spasms, but also when that was happening I got a pain in the back of my eye and twitching appears out of nowhere. I am wondering if I should get a MRI to check for brain cancer to be on the safe side. Comment from: Echo, 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: July 01 Two years ago I was diagnosed with three astrocytoma stage three brain tumors. After radiation and chemotherapy doctors found that one tumor had dispersed into nothingness and that the other two wrapped around my thalamus seemed to have stopped growing. Now doctors have pronounced my tumors stage two and in a kind of stasis. One said, 'We can't tell if they're active anymore, let alone if they are really there.' I don't know what that meant, I never received a very good explanation. The oncologist surgeon I see, who is unable to perform surgery on me (the tumors, he says, are unapproachable) urged me to live life to its fullest, keep taking Keppra and suggested that I should even start driving an automobile again, no matter what. His message, I think, was not to waste time wondering where things are going. I have to write it, even though I may sound like an ignorant fool, but I feel generally confounded to irritation, and I have no idea where I am with this or where it's going. Comment from: Nikki, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: January 06 I was 27 yrs old, and my symptoms started with a lingering headaches, and pressure in my head. I would feel as though my head was going to explode. I went to my general practitioner and all she did was check my eyes and pushed it off as Migraines, and stress. It wasn't till I ended up in Hospital after having a seizure (unconscious for about fifteen minutes), did I end up finding out after Ihad an MRI done that I had a Brain tumor. I had the Tumor removed but ended up being paralyzed on one side of my body. I had to go through much therapy to learn how to walk, use my arms, balance and every other routine thing. I was like a baby learning how to write and tie laces everything you could think of. My tumor was benign but now in my most recent MRI the area surrounding where the tumor is, is going white.They are unsure as to what this area is portraying. They don't know if it is residual tumor, or what. If anyone has any insight or has been through anything similar it would be very helpful to hear your comments. SLIDESHOW Cancer-Fighting Foods in Pictures: Resveratrol, Green Tea, and More See Slideshow Comment from: Tara, 65-74 Female (Caregiver) Published: October 28 My mother didn't not have any symptoms. She is extremely healthy...exercises every day, never smoked, never drinks alcohol, no family history of cancer. She just had a seizure one night and that was the beginning of her diagnosis. At first the doctors thought it was a stroke, then encephalitis, then finally they discovered a tumor. She had surgery to remove it but they were not able to remove all of it, then the biopsy came back as Stage 4 Brain cancer. Comment from: 65-74 Male (Caregiver) Published: August 27 My dad (73) has been diagnosed with a grade 4 brain tumor. He had his biopsy, and it is the worst form he could have. He had a small dose of radiation therapy, more for quality of life than to ease the swelling. Nothing more can be done for him, and we are still in shock as our dad had no previous symptoms. He was rarely sick. He did have stroke-like symptoms that were diagnosed when he went to the doctor, but as the symptoms got worse, his doctor referred him to the hospital. In his case, he did not suffer with any pain or headaches. So it goes to show, symptoms are not always present. Comment from: Sue, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: August 27 I am 53 years old and have had Epilepsy since the age of 11 but the medics have been trying many different combinations of drugs to control the seizures throughout my life. It wasn't until my optician picked up on some visual field loss caused by long term use of Sabril that she recommended that I be put back in contact with a specialist again. By this time, it was possible to have an MRI scan which was previously unavailable. This picked up a tumor on my right temporal lobe area. They are keeping a regular check on it to make sure its not getting larger, but the epilepsy still occurs and I'm too frightened to have the tumor removed as its uncertain what other faculties might be interfered with. Comment from: Rick, 65-74 Male (Patient) Published: September 23 I got CNS (central nervous system) lymphoma at 61 years. Currently still going strong at 69; no issues. I did have to retire at 61 however I still do 'some' work if I want to! You can have many years with great times and just as if it never happened. Best to you all. Comment from: Jjj, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: July 13 I have an acoustic neuroma, I have pain at the back of my head, left side. Comment from: Bertha, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: January 29 My name is. I had been getting really bad headaches. I started feeling my nerves acting up on my right side of my body. I went to my room to reach for something, but when I walked in my front room I had a seizure. I fell on my left side biting down on my lip. I was bleeding but I didn't felt anything! I got to the hospital and didn't expect the news: I have three tumors in the brain. I underwent two surgeries. I am about 80% better, but I miss being 100%. Comment from: 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: December 03 I had severed neck and pain and severe pain in the back of my head. Comment from: very sad daughter, 65-74 Male (Caregiver) Published: March 07 My father in law has been fighting cancer for the past 12 years. It started as skin cancer (he was a roofer by trade). The cancer then travelled thought to his liver and spotting on his lungs, he was given just six months to live in 2010. He was given a life line called Avastin after the chemo failed to help. This drug managed to shrink the cancer, and he has had regular body scans but never a brain scan. Two weeks ago he started to get severe headaches, loss of balance and now muddled speech. We have been at the hospital all day after an emergency scan and we are awaiting the results which we are told we will get in the morning. We love him with all our hearts. He is the head of our family and never ever moans. Comment from: Mermaid, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: January 24 I had a visual field disturbance for about 45 minutes one night. Two weeks later, I had what the doctor called "a classic migraine headache," in the afternoon of one day and the morning of the next. Both times the headaches were mild and went away within a couple of hours. As I had triple negative breast cancer two years ago, I had an MRI this morning to "rule out" a brain tumor and I just learned that I have brain metastasis, two spots on my brain Comment from: lindsey verne, 55-64 Female (Caregiver) Published: June 20 My mom was just diagnosed with brain with brain cancer and lung cancer. None of us never new until a few days ago she was supposed to go in for gall bladder surgery. This hit her all at once and she really had no symptoms except for now, she is losing her appetite and she had headaches and lower back pain. The doctors only gave her a month. QUESTION Which of these is NOT a type of head and neck cancer? See Answer Comment from: david, 55-64 Female (Caregiver) Published: June 07 About a month ago, my wife began seeing white spots in her right eye and thought that it was due to a new drug she was taking, so she went to see her eye doctor who found nothing wrong. She had been having headaches but did not associate them with anything other than stress. Then about 3 weeks ago she began to feel numbness and tingling on her right hand. We took her to the ER where they ran a CAT scan and an EKG but said all was normal. The next day, however, her right side began to spasm uncontrollably and she felt as though electric shocks were travelling up and down her right side. This time the ER did a CAT scan of her brain followed up with an MRI and found metastatic cancer throughout her brain. Comment from: Daddyslittlegirl9900, 13-18 Female (Caregiver) Published: April 04 My dad died from brain cancer. He had 18 tumors and he also had lung cancer! The doctors thought that he got brain cancer from the cancer in his lungs traveling to the brain! His symptoms where, falling, vomiting, seizures, headaches and he would pass out a lot! It was very depressing seeing him do things and say things he didn't mean! It has been 2 years! It is hard to see your dad who was your hero die from a horrible disease! Comment from: sponrunner, 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: April 01 I have suspected brain cancer. I have been advised that a biopsy will probably rob me of my power of speech so it will be the last resort. I have had 5 MRI scans which reveal a swelling of the brain from behind my left ear towards the rear of my head. No tumor is visible at this stage. I suffer sporadic memory loss such as how to operate the TV remote control, names of friends etc. I have a vague ache on both sides of the head which is not troublesome. My more or less hourly attacks of arm and hand trembling and sometimes inability to speak coherently are well controlled with medication. I am due for another MRI scan in 3 weeks time to hopefully find certainty one way or the other. Looking back I discern the problem starting about 3 or 4 months ago with sudden onset of sexual problems (slowness to achieve orgasm) coupled with startling and unusual difficulty in recalling information. About 3 weeks ago I started to wake at night with unexplained terror attacks which were later followed by feeling of nausea and arm and hand trembling (approximately 1 or 2 minutes) which increased dramatically from one per night to 7 or 8 per day until controlled with medication. Comment from: Erika, 65-74 Female (Caregiver) Published: March 16 My mother had breast cancer, clear for 5 years, then she complained of a sore hip, X-ray revealed cancer all over her lateral bones and skull. 3 weeks ago my mother collapsed thought she had a stroke, had no balance, dizzy when walking, pain in her legs, she had some hearing loss and her gait was irregular, also numb around her mouth. After an MRI discovered the cancer has moved into to the fluid sac around her brain and the spinal cord fluid. She is 71. Comment from: [email protected], 45-54 Female (Caregiver) Published: November 01 My husband is 47 yrs old as myself. He started having symptoms over about 1 and a half ago. He had been blacking out, having weakness in his legs, trembling of legs, tiredness, headaches, at the end of the day. Then one day, he and our son were out riding dirt bikes together, and my husband fell on the bike and had a helmet on but hit his head so hard, that the helmet came off. After 2 weeks of a headache every day, he went to the hospital to then found out he had a tumor, we then got further testing to show he also had a cyst right beside it. Needless to say, he then had to have brain surgery for 8 hrs to remove 90% of the tumor because the rest is attached to the brain and cause serious issues. He is taking it very hard emotionally-no work, driving, tired, angry, scared! He has started radiation and has been only going 8 days-small blister at radiation spot, but 99% aloe vera gel is great. He will be starting oral chemo soon and has radiation for 33 days. He has been a trooper through the hole process since September, especially because there have been lots of issues at one time. Comment from: sisterlylove, 55-64 Female (Caregiver) Published: August 16 I had attacks of severe headaches and just prior to these headaches, I was slightly disoriented and my arms and hands would tremble. These attacks would last anywhere from 30 seconds to three minutes. It was four or five months later that I was diagnosed with brain cancer. Comment from: 55-64 Male (Caregiver) Published: August 09 My dad has been suffering from Leukemia since February, 2009. Around November, he was diagnosed with throat cancer. Then on Mother's Day we discovered the throat cancer moved into his stomach. He started chemotherapy and the cancer counts were cut down by almost half after 2 months of treatment. About one month after finding out his cancer was diminishing, he had bad headaches. He immediately went to the eye doctor; they didn't find anything wrong. Then he went to his doctor and had an MRI and CAT scan. They didn't find anything. That was two weeks ago. Earlier this week he had another CAT scan and they found brain cancer. He had been suffering with headaches, loss of balance, diminished concentration, loss of appetite, you name it-he felt it. He has been so miserable the last 3 weeks. Comment from: meladan55, 55-64 Male (Caregiver) Published: July 30 My husband complained of memory lapses twice in three days. We thought he might be having mini-strokes. On the fourth day, he was diagnosed with glioblastoma multiforme, grade 4. On the tenth day, he had a resection and is now, 2 months later, finishing up round one of radiation and chemotherapy. We are hopeful but not overly optimistic. Memory loss was his only symptom. Comment from: sad1, 55-64 Female (Caregiver) Published: July 20 My father had strokes, headaches and memory issues that include memory loss, didn't make sense of conversations, gave incorrect info and was more direct and upfront with answers or conversations. He first had stage 4 lung cancer and beat that. Then the cancer moved to the brain. He underwent radiation and six weeks later, the cancer was back and more aggressive. He is now home with hospice. Comment from: No Fear, 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: April 28 I had a headache for about a month. The doctors say I have Primary Brain Cancer, Central Nervous System Lymphoma. Comment from: chris, 45-54 Female (Caregiver) Published: February 24 Before I was diagnosed with brain cancer, I got extremely bad headaches and double vision. Comment from: KKIKERSHIELDS64, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: February 12 I started going blind! That's how we discovered I had stage 4 lung cancer that had metastasized to my spine & gone to the lining of my brain with one tumor inside on my optic nerve. Ten rounds of radiation brought my eyesight back then it was on to chemo. If I hadn't started losing my eyesight, I don't know if I would be here now. So from the end of January 09 to the end of January 2010, I'm, in remission! For a couple of years, I had moderately severe migraines & my spine near the top would get jarring pains if I took a misstep like stepping in a little hole in the backyard & that was about a month before we discovered the cancer. So I had no major red flags, but I just found out my cancer doctor and his staff didn't think I'd see the end of 2009, but here I am turning 46!!!! Comment from: cheri s, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: February 08 I was told I had Lung cancer in June 2009, but in November, I had no sign of cancer. Now I have cancer of the brain and a large mass in my neck. I'm doing radiation on the brain. They told me 2/3 months with radiation. I'm doing it for my family. I'm angry all the time for no reason. Headaches. My mom died of this same thing. I'm Praying for all of us. Comment from: Nikki, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: January 07 I was 27 yrs old, and my symptoms started with a lingering headaches, and pressure in my head. I would feel as though my head was going to explode. I went to my general practitioner and all she did was check my eyes and pushed it off as migraines, and stress. It wasn't until I ended up in hospital after having an MRI for seizures that I discovered I had a brain tumor. I had the tumor removed, but ended up being paralyzed on one side of my body. I had to go through much therapy to learn how to walk, use my arms, balance and every other routine thing. I was like a baby learning how to write and tie laces and everything you could think of. My tumor was benign, but now in my most recent MRI, the area surrounding where the tumor is, is going white. They are unsure as to what this area is portraying. The doctors don't know if it is residual tumor or what. If anyone has any insight or has been through anything similar it would be very helpful to hear your comments. Comment from: Ike, 55-64 Female (Caregiver) Published: November 18 My mom has been in a coma for 2 weeks now, she had been showing the signs of brain cancer in the past months but it went undetected by her. I wish I knew because maybe we could have caught it sooner. My mom in her lifetime has battled cancer consistently. First it was thyroid cancer, then bone marrow cancer due to cells and scar tissue left from the thyroid cancer. Then breast cancer which we just battled and won last year and now this. She was just checked this June and the oncologist stated that she was cancer free but they did not do a full body PET/CAT scan, just from the chest down so the brain cancer went undetected. Since March she complained of headaches, feeling weak, lack of balance, being out of breath and feeling like she was having a heart attack. The doctors would do the vital checks and everything looked good so they diagnosed her as having anxiety attacks and prescribed Paxil to ease the attacks but the body kept breaking down and I just wish I knew to research the brain cancer symptoms before. It pains me because I love my mom and it has always been her and I together. Life without her now just seems void. Comment from: claram, 55-64 Female (Caregiver) Published: November 02 My mum is 58 and had cancer of the kidney and adrenal gland 3 and a half years ago. On June 1st 2009 she was diagnosed with brain cancer. She has had major brain surgery and is now deteriorating rapidly. Two weeks ago she was rushed into hospital when my father was unable to wake her. She was in a coma for 28 hours, she suffered 3 seizures. She has now been released from hospital and has moved in with myself and my partner of 10 years as my father, 63, is unable to cope. It's hard now and I know things will get harder but she has me to take care of her they way she has always taken care of me. Comment from: 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: August 12 I had surgery for a primary brain cancer on July 1. The doctors were amazed at the size of the tumor. My surgeon told me she would not be able to resection all of the tumor because a part of it was in the vial areas. The surgery was ten hours. My final path report showed the remaining tumor had P1 and Q19 markers which means the tumor will not respond to chemo. I am about to start radiation. Comment from: Michele S, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: March 10 I am a 38 year old woman who was diagnosed with a grade II Astrocytoma in my left temporal lobe about six months ago. For several years I had symptoms such as severe nausea, with feelings that I was going to faint or black out, some headache, depression, disorientation with time. Unfortunately the feelings were so vague that I was able to go for several years without being diagnosed, I was only lucky that the tumor had only reached grade II, which is slow growing. I was diagnosed after I woke up one morning and had numbness on the right side of my body. I have had a partial surgical resection and stereotactic radio surgery. Now, I suffer from spells where I feel disoriented and confused, the right side of my body will still feel numb and tingly, headache, dizziness. I am still waiting on the results of the radio surgery, which could take up to a year. Other than having a brain tumor, I'm healthy!