Glioblastoma occurs due to an abnormal growth within the brain. Caused by changes in certain cells within the brain especially the astrocytes (glial cells involved in neuronal synapses in the brain), glioblastoma can happen to anyone. However, adults have been found to be the most susceptible group.
Patients suffer from glioblastoma in different ways. They could just experience these tumors without any previous ailment or glioblastoma could arise from the degeneration of an underlying condition.
Symptoms of Glioblastoma
The symptoms of the disease due to the abnormal growth of the cells involved and the repercussions of the swellings include:
- Severe pain in the head
- You can do certain things like moving around, memory and others (depends on the part of the brain affected)
Since glioblastoma has similar symptoms with many ailments, the diagnosis will consist of:
A Physical exam
The doctor will ask questions regarding the symptoms you have been seeing. If it matches that of glioblastoma, you will be put through a neurologic function test. This will involve assessing the capacity of several parts of your body including your eyes, limbs, and general body function.
The use of a Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)
If there are clear signs of an abnormal growth in your brain, the doctor will use an MRI to confirm the presence of such. This imaging technique gives a clear picture of the brain. This provides the specialist with the opportunity to decide if your condition is due to glioblastoma or not.
In MRI, the tumors appear distinct from the healthy brain cells due to the use of a dye in this imaging technique.
Other imaging tests such as the Positron Emission Tomography (PET) and Computerized Tomography (CT) can be utilized as well.
This is more of an affirmation of the presence of a tumor than an actual test for an abnormal growth. In the biopsy, the surgeon collects tissues from the probable tumor site for further examination to be done within a medical laboratory.
If the analysis of the tissue is positive for the death of cells, the abnormal cell growth is confirmed to be due to glioblastoma.
A biopsy can also enlighten the specialist on the nature of the glioblastoma involved. This makes a biopsy relevant in the diagnosis of this ailment.
You can live your normal life after glioblastoma. But delays in seeking treatment could have grave repercussions – the earlier you seek medical help, the better.
Our clinic can help with glioblastoma treatment procedures which could curtail the abnormal growth of cells in the brain and reduce the impact of the disease.
Below are some of the treatment methods we provide:
Treating glioblastoma entails the removal of the tumor within the brain. A surgical procedure can be used to achieve that. While the surgeon can attempt to extract as much of the abnormal growth in the brain possible, there’s only so much which surgery can do – the tentacular movement of the glioblastomas could be responsible for this.
This procedure brings about a reduction in the size of a tumor. While chemotherapy could be a stand-alone procedure, it can be done after a surgical exercise carried out to remove a significant amount of abnormal tissue.
Every part of the body is covered in chemotherapy and not selected regions. This means chemotherapy is not administered to only the head – the location of the glioblastoma.
There are different ways through which chemotherapy is carried out including:
- Orally – using drugs
- Intravenous paths
Just like chemotherapy, radiation therapy could prove quite helpful when done after surgery. Also, it can be a executed as a stand-alone exercise.
The procedure involves the use of energetic particles like X-rays to destroy the tumor cells present in the brain.
Tumor Treating Fields Therapy (TTF)
If the abnormal growth persists despite surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy, TTF could be utilized. The procedure uses an electric field to curtail this abnormal growth.
In TTF, your brain is linked to a device which produces an alternating electric field with a low intensity. You don’t have to be frightened; the electric field generated isn’t dangerous.
In situations where every other approach fails to have the desired effect, specific drugs with the capacity to disrupt the activity of these abnormal cells are used. If the tumor cells are not getting the nourishment they need due to the disruption of certain activities, they will wilt and die.
Some situations might warrant the management of the ailment rather than direct treatment. Medications can help curb certain symptoms experienced in glioblastoma. These drugs can be used to reduce the occurrence of symptoms like seizures and inflammations.
This approach isn’t a true solution to a patient of glioblastoma, but it can help reduce the trauma experienced.
Innovative treatment methods
There are new treatments procedures discovered daily. Our clinic can educate you on these methods. Since these procedures are not yet widely accepted, the side-effects are still be shrouded in mystery.
However, if the desired result is not forthcoming through the conventional methods, the clinical trials can be carried out with your consent.