A meningioma is a tumour that grows in the meninges, the thin layers of protective tissue that cover the brain and spinal cord. These tumours are usually slow growing and most are benign (non-cancerous). Meningiomas tend to occur between the ages of 30 and 70 and affect women more than men.
In many cases, meningiomas don't cause any symptoms and may not require immediate treatment. However, sometimes the growth of these tumours can cause problems particularly if they push on or compress other structures such as brain tissues, nerves or vessels. In some cases, meningiomas can lead to serious disability or even be fatal.
Signs and symptoms of a meningioma typically begin gradually and may initially be quite subtle. They may include blurred vision, headaches which are worse in the morning, memory loss, seizures, weakness in the arms or legs and speech problems. If a meningioma is suspected, a patient will undergo an MRI or CT scan which will be used to confirm a diagnosis.
In many cases, a meningioma will be managed conservatively with regular brain scans performed to monitor tumour growth. If the tumour's size threatens to cause problems or symptoms worsen, surgery to remove the tumour may be required or radiation therapy may be used to shrink the meningioma.
Briz Brain & Spine specialists can diagnose and treat many types of brain and spinal tumours, including meningiomas. For further information about these types of tumours and how to treat them, visit our website or contact us.