Craniopharyngioma Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis And Treatment

Craniopharyngioma

What Is Craniopharyngioma?

Craniopharyngioma is a benign brain tumor that accounts for about 3-9% of all pediatric CNS cancers. This tumor results from abnormal overgrowth of a part of the brain called Rathke’s pouch, located near the pituitary gland. It typically consists of a combination of calcium deposits mixed with cysts, or pockets, of fluid. The fluid characteristically contains protein, lipid (fat) and cholesterol pieces, giving it a so-called “crankcase oil” texture.

Cause Of Craniopharyngioma:

There is no definite cause of Craniopharyngioma. It can occur in both children and adults, with a peak in incidence at 9 to 14 years of age.

Roughly, more than 50% of all patients with craniopharyngioma are under the age of 18 years. There is no clear association of the tumor with a particular gender or race. They don’t appear to be genetic or inherited.

Symptoms Of Craniopharyngioma:

Craniopharyngioma causes symptoms by:

  • Increasing pressure on the brain, usually from hydrocephalus
  • Disrupting hormone production by the pituitary gland
  • Decreasing vision due to pressure or damage to the optic nerve
  • Vomiting, nausea and difficulty with balance
  • Behavioral and learning problems

Diagnosis Of Craniopharyngioma:

The following tests and exams help in diagnosis:

  • Blood tests to measure hormone levels
  • CT scan or MRI scan of the brain
  • Neurological examination

Treatment Of Craniopharyngioma:

Traditionally, surgery has been the main treatment for craniopharyngioma. However, radiation treatment instead of surgery or along with a smaller surgery may be the best choice for some patients.
In tumors that cannot be removed completely with surgery alone, radiation therapy is usually necessary. If the tumor has a classic appearance on CT scan, a biopsy may not be necessary if treatment with radiation alone is planned.

Stereotactic radio surgery is performed at some medical centers.

By : Natural Health News

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