Brain tumor

Medical Specialties: Neurology, Oncology, Radiology

Clinical Definition

A neoplasm in the intracranial region of the central nervous system is referred to as a brain tumor. It can develop due to a mutation in cell DNA that leads to abnormal cell growth and mass formation. Brain tumors can be either benign or malignant and are also considered either primary or secondary. There are various classifications of brain tumors according to cell type and grade. 

In Our Own Words

A brain tumor is an abnormal growth in the brain that can be cancerous or noncancerous. This growth is the result of cells in the brain growing too quickly. Some brain tumors originate or start in the cells that make up and support the brain. These types of tumors are called primary brain tumors. In other instances, cancer that started somewhere else in the body spreads (or metastasizes) to the brain. When this occurs, it is called a secondary brain tumor.


There are several types of brain tumors that are named depending on what part of the brain the tumor started in and the type of cell the tumor formed in. Brain tumors are also classified by whether they grow fast or slow. 

Relevant Conditions
Common Types
  • Glioma
  • Meningioma
Side Effects
  • Headache
  • Vision loss
  • Balance problems
  • Seizures
Share this article
  • Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center. “Brain Tumors.” Accessed September 2013.
  • American Brain Tumor Association. “Brain Tumor Symptoms.” Accessed September 2013.
  • University of Pittsburgh Neurological Surgery. “Brain Tumors.” Accessed September 2013.
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