New symptoms to be worried about – brain tumors forum – cancer forums what is endometrial biopsy

I posted here a while back when my mom was initially diagnosed with a brain tumor, biopsy revealed it was primary cns lymphoma. I’ve realized that symptoms and behavior wise cns lymphoma has more in common with other brain tumors than it does with lymphoma so I’m posting my query here.

She finished her treatment in February which included 4 weeks of radiation in December. An mri done in Jan following persistent headache showed no new spots and only the scarring left by radiation. Now since feb she again started getting headaches, docs say it’s because of the changes caused by radiation so prescribe her 2 mg twice a day dex for 3 days then 2 mg once a day for 3 days then stop. This has been going on since then so she has been unable to completely come off dex. Once she stops the headache comes back in a few days, it’s not severe though and the drs say it can take months for these changes to settle down.

The real cause of worry now is that she’s been complaining of lower back pain since the last couple of days. This has me completely freaked out. Her follow up is due in late april. I should mention that this lower back pain isn’t too severe and otherwise she’s doing fine, just a little wobbly on her feet(been so since the surgery)and a bit too emotional (i heard dex can do that?)

Your mom had lymphoma that occurred in her brain (CNS). Yes, it was a tumor, but that tumor was made of lymphocytes, not of brain cells – huge difference. Lymphoma is a tumor of either B or T Lymphocytes, white blood cells which are integral parts of the immune system and travel freely throughout the body fighting infection – even in the brain. For some unknown reason, when a single lymphocyte mutates and begins making clones of itself (cancer), they take up residence in the brain, spine, eyes, skin, pancreas, kidneys, bladder, liver, lungs, you name it. Wherever blood flows, lymphoma may occur. No rhyme or reason as to where they choose to take up residence. CNS lymphoma is very rare, but is nothing more than lymphoma. It is not and never has been brain cancer as we normally think of it.

Secondly, inflammation caused by the tumor presses on portions of the brain and causes behavioral and bodily function to change in unpredictable ways. The lymphoma tumor (or any other type) can cause symptoms/behavioral changes both in its expansion as well as in its contraction. The brain tissue was compressed and is now expanding. At some level, it produces symptoms going both ways. A crude analogy is if you walked on fresh cement and suddenly realized it, stopping in your tracks. You look back and see your footprints. You made damage walking into it, and you cannot walk back out without also leaving damage/evidence of your presence.

At some level, there is pain or other symptoms both in the injury as well as the healing. If you have had a broken bone, for example, you have experienced this. I hope that this helps explain why mom still has symptoms. As to worry, it is useless, counterproductive and 100% natural. It cannot and does not help – so why do we do it? Facing the unknown, we oftentimes do not know anything else to do. Worry can be replaced by confidence, if we choose to allow that. Just my take on it.