Saturday, May 30, 2009

Meningioma Symptoms

This very tricky brain tumor still has the researchers baffled and no-one has yet conclusively shown why they appear or why they choose their victims.

What is apparent though is that nobody has the exact same experience or meningioma symptoms which also make it tricky to diagnose. Having read through meningioma survival stories and spoken to neurologists it would appear that everyone has a different story to tell. The one thing that they did all share though is the emotion of shear panic when the diagnosis if confirmed.

Meningioma symptoms are very varied due to location and what body parts or functions are being affected in that part of the brain. Before they become troublesome, many people have subtle symptoms, experienced over a long period of time, that they do not associate with brain interference and are often surprised when the meningioma is diagnosed.

Meningioma symptoms such as memory loss, carelessness and vision blurring are also problems many people have to put up with as they get older and therefore these symptoms alone would not necessarily alert us to any major problem. Meningiomas may cause focal neurological defects and these are the symptoms that often send us to the doctor initially:
Arm or leg weakness
Constant headaches

Other meningioma symptoms that may be passed by as insignificant on their own are:
Hearing loss
Loss of smell
Loss of sensation in the face
Vision Loss or visual problems

All these symptoms are caused because of increased pressure or restriction of the related function in the brain. The meningioma is fighting for space as it grows and if it is benign (non cancerous) and slow growing, can become fairly large before any symptoms become apparent. Appropriate treatment options are dependant on location but surgery is recommended if accessible to remove all or as much as possible of the meningioma.

A meningioma is a tumour of the meninges. The meninges are protective membranes around the brain and spinal cord. 90% of meningiomas are benign, 6% are atypical, and 2% are malignant. Research so far has shown that meningioma brain tumours are more common in women than men and seem to be more prevalent in the 40 - 60 year old age group. Research continues to be carried out into the possible causes of meningioma as at the present time, as with most brain tumours, no conclusive cause has been found.

The majority of meningioma brain tumors are benign - the word benign is misleading in this case as, when benign tumours grow and constrict the brain, they can cause disability and even be life threatening if not treated.
Take note of what your body is trying to tell you. If you are experiencing any strange or unusual symptoms that you are uncomfortable about, a visit to your physician is always the best remedy.

First seen at Article Source:

Thursday, May 21, 2009

A Meningioma Brain Tumor Diagnosis Needn't Be the End of the World!

I thought I'd share with you a few articles written by my husband over the last year.
First seen at :


Let's face it, on the list of scary things that can happen to someone, being diagnosed with a meningioma type brain tumor has got to be pretty high on anyones list. But, whether it's happened to you or to a loved one, a meningioma brain tumor diagnosis needn't be the end of the world.

In the summer of 2006 my wife was suffering from involuntary spasms in her leg. She initially thought this was probably a trapped nerve in her back, (Note to reader:- Unless you're a doctor, self diagnosis is a big no-no)!

When this started to happen on a fairly regular basis it became more than a little annoying and so a trip to the doctors was arranged. Thankfully we have a very good doctor who decided as a first option rather than a last one, to arrange an MRI scan. But an MRI scan on the head and not her back, where she had thought the problem may be!

The MRI scan was carried out and being rather optimistic by nature, we both thought that it would reveal nothing and that it would then be a case of physiotherapy or some such treatment. What happened next changed our lives overnight. A meningioma brain tumor was diagnosed as being the cause of the 'kicking leg' effect.

To say we were both shell shocked would be an understatement. When someone tells you you have a brain tumor, the automatic first thought is that you are going to die. Period. I know that was true for my wife and I'd be less than honest if I said that it wasn't the first thought in my head as well.

I believe it is the case that benign meningiomas are far more common in women than they are in men. The fact is though, that a meningioma type brain tumor can be one of the most operable type of tumors there is. Also, they are most often benign, which was the case for my wife.

After the initial shock had subsided a little, we started to try to think positive again. We made an appointment with the neurosurgeon and my first question to him was, "how much pain will my wife experience?" His answer came as quite a surprise.
"No pain", he said. This man was exactly the sort of person you would want if someone was going to open up your skull and start delving around inside! He was the epitome of the word 'calm'. He exuded such a relaxed attitude to the whole affair that he instilled a great deal of confidence in both of us. We both began to feel that perhaps a meningioma brain tumor diagnosis was not going to mean the end of the world after all.

And so it proved. The 5 hour operation was a completed success. The meningioma was removed in one piece and after a few days in intensive care my wife was moved to a general ward area of the hospital to complete her recovery.

I kept asking her if she was in any pain and always the answer was "no". In fact we now look back and laugh at the fact that the most pain she experienced during the entire hospital stay was indigestion from the hospital food!

Within 10 days my wife was back home and the day after that she was back working on her computer. I tried to stop her but she wanted to do it, saying she was bored and just wanted to get back to normal.

So although it's a very scary thing to be told - A meningioma brain tumor diagnosis need not be the end of the world.
You Can Read One Woman's Uplifting Story Of Her Meningioma Brain Tumor Diagnosis (and recovery) at

Article Source:

Monday, April 13, 2009

Good Positive Vibes Required

I recently received some communication from Lesly following a post and felt it appropriate to reply and send lots of good positive vibes.

Thanks for the comment Lesly. I hope you are finding a way to remain as positive as you can. I was certainly shell shocked at the beginning with an overwhelming feelings of 'Why me?' and 'How did this happen?' but I learnt a great deal about human nature and how much people around you care and are prepared to help at a time like this.

You may find it helps to write down your feelings in note form at the end of each day. This helped me to come to terms with facts, think about and face any decisions that I had to make, whether they were treatment based or emotional. It was also what brought about the E-book afterwards.

The E-book , which believe me relates a total roller coaster of emotion was actually quite difficult to write as it brought back many memories and made me revisit the fear of the situation. But, it also made me giggle and smile to recall the funny and loving moments and the biggest opportunity it presented was a huge platform to say thank you to the fabulous people around me.
Big hugs from me to you Lesly.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Meningioma Brain Tumour Diagnosis
Is This A Time For Rest and Relaxation?

Scary, You bet your life it is! However you have received this news, it has to be a shock to your whole system. This turbulent time, following a brain tumour diagnosis, often leaves people with little, or at best troubled, sleep. Waking hours can be filled with anxiety where you are in the unfamiliar territory of hospitals, brain scanners and facing your own demons. Putting on that brave face, masking your fears or meningioma symptoms, to protect family and other loved ones is exhausting and can leave you emotionally drained.

It is essential that you have the strength to meet these challenges both physically and emotionally. You may have to make some of the most important decisions of your life right now, and you need to face these decisions with clarity, despite the upheaval all around you.

There are countless tried and tested methods of relaxation from lavender pillows to yoga. Many will be available to you in some guise or other, via your local community or through a simple internet search. However, some of these techniques take time to master and learning a new skill at this time may not be such a relaxing experience.

Giving yourself time to think, is every bit as effective. This does not mean time to worry, get agitated or drown in self pity. It means allowing yourself time to digest all the meningioma facts, how you feel about it and setting your resolve to deal with it.

In a stressful state your muscles tighten, all over your body. This is incredibly energy sapping and makes sleep almost impossible. All this is in addition to any meningioma symptoms that you may be experiencing. A walk along the beach, a quiet place in the park or a place that is special to you can provide the perfect atmosphere to remove you from your suddenly acquired stress inducing, thought-clutter. In a relaxed state, your rate of breathing slows, your blood pressure reduces and importantly, your muscle tension decreases.

It has long been accepted that a good sleep is a great panacea. It gives you more energy, now more than ever you need this to deal with your day. You really don't need a common cold on top of your brain tumour, and better sleep increases your resistance to viruses. If you are better able to concentrate after a reasonable sleep or a period of quality relaxation, then you are better placed to take control of what is happening to you and you will feel less vulnerable.

This special relaxation time does not need to be spent alone, but it is better to be away from situations that cause your stress, and don't forget, the people that you love the most may be the ones that you feel most stressed about sharing the details of your meningioma brain tumour with. If you are rested and relaxed, your emotions more stable so you have a better chance of sharing with and keeping close, the people most important to you.

Ultimately, the most important issue is that you understand your meningioma brain tumour - and for that you need a clear head!
If you would like to read more about one woman's fascinating and uplifting story and discover how she coped with her brain tumour from diagnosis through to recuperation, you can obtain her Book here:

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Progress In Fighting Brain Tumours?

Why Has There Been So Little Progress In Fighting Brain Tumours?
It is a fact that brain tumours account for less than 2% of total cancers which makes them relatively uncommon when compared to other cancers such as lung, breast and prostrate cancers.

Because there are so many different subtypes, requiring different treatment strategies screening for them, as they do for breast and prostrate cancers is almost an impossible task.

Due to the above situation and the different subtypes, funding is harder to obtain and therefore clinical trials that would eventually lead to more rigorous testing are fewer.

I believe there has also been less exposure in the media in the past, but of late we have seen a prominant figure and celebrities that have been diagnosed, namely Kennedy, Russell Watson the singer and Sevi Ballesteros the golfer. These prominant figureheads have drawn the publics attention to the brain tumor problem but public education is not high on the agenda and few people unless actually diagnosed or affected indirectly by the diagnosis of a family member or friend, are really aware of symptoms, treatments and long term results.

A good website to visit to obtain further information on what is going on in these fields is:

Monday, January 5, 2009

Happy New Year Everyone

I read an inspiring book over the Christmas break and felt quite humbled by it.

It is a book about how life suddenly changed overnight for a guy who was 38 and suffered a brain lesion. His book, like mine, takes you through his experience of events. I felt sorry for him, angry for him, understood fully his hospital fiascoes and what I ended up feeling was proud of him, for his determination, perseverance and being able to keep a hold of his wit and long term vision throughout the nightmare.

The book for anyone interested is called:
'I Think There's Something Wrong With Me' by Nigel Smith.
An enjoyable, thought provoking read.