Brain tumor


One brain tumor is a very rare condition for which no cause is usually found. People get sick mainly during childhood or at the age of 70 years. There are many brain tumor types - good and malignant. Your treatment and prognosis vary greatly. Generally, a brain tumor can be operated on, irradiated or treated with chemotherapeutic agents. Here you can read all important information about brain tumor.

ICD codes for this disease: ICD codes are internationally valid medical diagnosis codes. They are found e.g. in medical reports or on incapacity certificates. D43C71D33ArtikelübersichtHirntumor

  • description
  • symptoms
  • Causes and risk factors
  • brain metastases
  • Examinations and diagnosis
  • treatment
  • Disease course and prognosis

Brain Tumor: Description

The term brain tumor refers to any benign and malignant tumor within the skull. Brain tumors are relatively rare compared to bowel, lung, breast or other cancers. In 2010, according to cancer registry data of the Robert Koch Institute, approximately 2,900 women and 3,800 men in Germany contracted a brain tumor. In both genders, most illnesses were recorded between the ages of 70 and 75 years. About 100 females and 200 males were under 20 years old.

Brain tumor is relatively common in children compared to other cancers. According to the Childhood Cancer Registry, about a quarter of childhood cancers are due to tumors of the central nervous system.

Brain tumor is not the same brain tumor. First, there are as mentioned both benign and malignant brain tumor forms ("brain cancer"). In addition, a distinction is made between primary and secondary brain tumors: primary brain tumors

The primary is a brain tumor that develops directly from cells of the brain or the meninges. Such tumors are also referred to as brain tumors.

Tumors that originate from a cranial nerve are often counted among the primary brain tumors. The cranial nerves are to a large extent in the skull, but are not attributed to the central nervous system (CNS: brain and spinal cord), but the peripheral nervous system. If a tumor in the head of a cranial nerve, it is therefore actually a neoplasm of the peripheral nervous system.

The primary brain tumors are subdivided according to different criteria. The World Health Organization (WHO) divides the individual tumors according to which tissue they are derived from and to what extent the brain tumor is malignant or benign. This distinction influences both brain tumor treatment and prognosis. Interestingly, only a small proportion of brain tumors are derived from nerve cells (neurons). More than every second primary brain tumor develops from the supporting tissue of the brain and thus belongs to the group of gliomas. The following table gives an overview of the most important brain tumors:


They are derived from the supporting cells of the CNS. These include, for example, astrocytoma, oligodendroglioma and glioblastoma.


This brain tumor is formed by cells that line the inner brain chambers.


The medulloblastoma is formed in the cerebellum. It is the most important brain tumor in children.


This tumor is based on cranial nerves. He is also called Schwannom.


This brain tumor develops from the meninges.

CNS lymphoma

CNS lymphoma forms from a cell group of white blood cells.

Germ cell tumors

Germ cell tumors include germinoma and choriocarcinoma.

Brain tumor of the Sellaregion

These tumors are found in a certain place in the brain, the sella turcica. This is usually the pituitary gland. They include the pituitary adenoma and the craniopharyngioma.

In each age group, individual brain tumors are more common than others. Among the primary brain tumors, gliomas, meningiomas, and pituitary tumors are most common in adults. If a brain tumor occurs in children, it is usually a medulloblastoma or a glioma.

Secondary brain tumors

Much more common than a primary brain tumor are secondary brain tumors. They arise when cells from other organ tumors (for example, lung cancer, skin cancer, breast cancer) enter the brain and form a daughter tumor here. These are therefore brain metastases. They are not considered by some professionals as a "true" brain tumor.

With the brain metastases one differentiates between removals in the brain tissue (parenchyma metastases) and those in the meninges (meningeosis carcinomatosa).

To the table of contents

Brain tumor: symptoms

You can read all about possible signs of a brain tumor in the article Brain Tumor - Symptoms.