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Brain cancer

Brain cancer - What it is

Brain cancers are generally named after the tissue which they originate from. Majority are glima arising from glial cells in the brain. These include astrocytomas, oligodendrogliomas, ependymomas and mixed cell type gliomas. The other forms of brain cancers are meningiomas, medulloblastomas, chordomas and central nervous system lymphomas.

Brain cancers can be fast growing (high grade), such as glioblastoma multiforme or slow growing (low grade), such as pilocytic astrocytoma.

Cancers from other organs can spread to the brain and are called brain metastases. Brain metastases comprise cancer cells from the original site of cancer, such as lung cancer cells and breast cancer cells.

How common is Brain Cancer?

This is an uncommon cancer in Singapore. Between 1968 and 2007 there were about 1,903 cases reported. Most were astrocytomas and glioblastoma multiforme.

Age of Onset

Infants have been reported to have brain cancers as well. However, the risk increases after the age of 35 years. During the childhood years, primary brain and spinal cord cancers are the second leading cause of death from cancer.

Brain cancer - How to prevent?

Brain cancer - Preparing for surgery

Brain cancer - Post-surgery care

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Information provided by Singhealth