A brain tumour forms when cells grow and divide in an uncontrollable way. When this occurs, the tumour takes up space within the skull and can interfere with the brain's normal activity. A tumour may cause damage by increasing pressure in the brain, by shifting the brain and causing it to push against the skull, and/or by invading and damaging nerve and healthy brain tissue.
Brain tumours can be benign or malignant (brain cancer). There are two main types of brain cancer:
- Primary – a tumour that originates from the brain tissue
- Metastatic – a tumour caused by cancer elsewhere in the body that spreads to the brain
Most of these tumours have no known risk factors and occur at random. Some symptoms to be aware of are:
- Nausea and vomiting
- Weakness or numbness on one side of the body
- Changes in vision, hearing, speech or sensation
- Memory loss
- Change in mood or personality
For brain tumours, the treatment options are determined on the basis of:
- Tumour type and grade
- Location and size
- Patients age, medical history and health
Surgery, radiotherapy and chemotherapy are all used as treatment options for these tumours.
External Beam Radiotherapy for Brain Tumours
External beam radiotherapy is used to treat both:
- Benign and malignant tumours, and
- Primary and metastatic brain cancer
Brain tumours because of their presence in the most important organ of the human body and their close proximity to some of the most important components of the body require high levels of radiotherapy treatment accuracy. Adelaide Radiotherapy Centre is adequately equipped to provide all levels of required accuracy for the optimal treatment of brain tumours, both benign and malignant.
For the treatment of brain tumours, linear accelerators deliver their dose via Conformal radiotherapy methods including Intensity Modulated Radiotherapy (IMRT).
Adelaide Radiotherapy Centre also offers patients access to an advanced Stereotactic Radiosurgery (SRS) technique which treats certain brain tumours amenable to receiving large doses in single or short number of visits.
Stereotactic Radiosurgery is an attractive alternative to open surgery for treating brain tumours.
Please refer to our Stereotactic Radiosurgery (SRS) brochure here for more information and contact details.