Brain tumor - metastatic (secondary); Cancer - brain tumor (metastatic)
Decreased coordination, clumsiness, falls
- Rapid emotional changes or strange behaviors
Fever(sometimes) General ill feelingor lethargy Headache-- recent or a new, more severe type type for the person
- Memory loss, poor judgment, difficulty solving problems
- Numbness, tingling, pain, and other changes in sensation
- Personality changes
Seizures-- new for the person
- Speech difficulties
Vision changes-- double vision, decreased vision Vomiting-- with or without nausea
- Weakness of a body area
Note: Specific symptoms vary. The symptoms commonly seen with most types of metastatic brain tumor are those caused by increased pressure in the brain.
Signs and tests
An examination reveals neurologic changes that are specific to the location of the tumor. Signs of increased pressure within the skull are also common. Some tumors may not show symptoms until they are very large. Then, they suddenly cause rapid decline in the person's neurologic functioning.
The original (primary) tumor may already be known, or it may be discovered after an examination of tumor tissues from the brain indicates that it is a metastatic type of tumor.
CT scanor MRI of the braincan confirm the diagnosis of brain tumor and identify the location of the tumor. MRI is usually better for finding tumors in the brain. Cerebral angiographyis occasionally performed. It may show a space-occupying mass, which may or may not be highly vascular (filled with blood vessels).
chest x-ray, mammogram, CT scansof the chest, abdomen, and pelvis, and other tests are performed to look for the original site of the tumor.
EEGmay reveal abnormalities in the nerve signaling in the brain.
- An examination of tissue removed from the tumor during surgery or CT scan-guided
biopsyis used to confirm the exact type of tumor. If the primary tumor can be located outside of the brain, the primary tumor is usually biopsied rather than the brain tumor.
lumbar puncture(spinal tap) is sometimes also performed to test the cerebral spinal fluid to look for cells related to the tumor.