The symptoms of a brain tumor vary somewhat depending on its size and location and individuals may experience symptoms differently. As a tumor grows, it puts pressure on the brain tissue, causing many of the symptoms. Common signs of a brain tumor caused by increased cranial pressure (ICP) include:
- Nausea and vomiting
- Personality changes such as irritability and depression
- Problems speaking and communicating
- Confusion and memory loss
- Vision problems
- Loss of bladder control
- Numbness and tingling in one part of the body
- Impaired heart and lung function which may lead to a coma
In addition to these signs of a brain tumor, its position on the brain may produce other symptoms. When a the growth occurs in the outer part of the brain (the cerebrum), the signs of a brain tumor may also include seizures, slurred speech, paralysis of part of the face or body, problems walking, inability to communicate, personality changes and short-term memory loss. Tumors forming on the brain stem, the base of the brain, can lead to seizures, diabetes, respiratory changes, loss of coordination, vision or hearing changes, altered personality and facial paralysis. Tumors on the cerebellum, the back of the brain, also cause vomiting and problems walking and coordination.
Signs that a brain tumor has developed on the pituitary gland are indicated by physical changes such as enlarged hands and feet, facial alterations, obesity, growth of body hair and breast development in men. This location also leads to low blood pressure, sensitivity to temperature extremes, and can interfere with a woman’s cycle.