10 Serious Signs of a Brain Tumor

Mar 02, 2024
10 Serious Signs of a Brain Tumor
Are you experiencing headaches that just won't ease or do you have unexplained nausea? Learn about some of the signs of a brain tumor, including those you might not expect, and how recognizing them early can make all the difference.

Did you wake up with a headache that just won’t quit? Or have you noticed changes in your balance that make your everyday activities a challenge?

These symptoms have many possible causes, but they could also be a warning sign of a brain tumor.

At the Center for Minimally Invasive Neurosurgery, with multiple locations in the greater Houston area, we specialize in treating this condition.  

If you’re worried about a brain tumor, don’t wait to schedule an appointment with a neurosurgeon like Praveen Reddy, MD, M.Ch, who can accurately assess and diagnose your condition. 

In the meantime, here’s a closer look at brain tumors and 10 serious signs that could be related to these growths. 

Understanding brain tumors

Brain tumors are masses or growths of abnormal cells in your brain. They can be categorized into two main types: primary and secondary. Both types disrupt normal brain function and lead to serious health issues. 

Primary brain tumors start in the brain and can be benign (noncancerous) or malignant (cancerous). Secondary brain tumors, also known as metastatic brain tumors, are cancerous tumors that spread to the brain from another part of the body. 

Serious signs of these serious brain growths

Brain tumors cause many different symptoms, often depending on where they’re located and their size. Here are signs to be aware of:


Headaches are the most commonly reported symptom of a brain tumor. These aren't your average headaches. They tend to worsen over time, becoming more frequent or even constant. 


They may be especially severe in the morning or worsen when you cough or exercise. But not all headaches indicate a brain tumor, and other causes are far more common.


Seizures, or sudden, uncontrolled electrical disturbances in the brain, can be a sign of a brain tumor. They might manifest as convulsions, sensory disturbances, or even a period of confusion.

Balance problems and dizziness

Experiencing balance issues and dizziness can be signs of a brain tumor affecting the parts of your brain responsible for balance and coordination. This might make it difficult to walk or perform daily tasks without feeling unsteady or like the room is spinning.

Personality changes

If you or your loved ones notice significant changes in personality or behavior, this could be a red flag. Brain tumors can affect areas of the brain responsible for personality, leading to increased irritability, apathy, or changes in judgment and impulse control.

Nausea and vomiting

Unexplained nausea and vomiting, especially when they occur without other digestive issues, can be signs of a brain tumor. This is particularly true if these symptoms are more pronounced in the morning.

Vision or hearing difficulties

Sudden or gradual changes in vision or hearing, like blurred vision, double vision, loss of peripheral vision, or hearing loss, could indicate a brain tumor. These symptoms can arise from tumors pressing on or damaging the nerves responsible for sight and hearing.

Speech, language, thinking, and memory problems

Changes in mental function, like difficulty with speaking, understanding language, or remembering things, can be signs of a brain tumor. You might find it hard to recall words, follow conversations, or concentrate, which are indicators of the tumor affecting cognitive areas of the brain.

Weakness or paralysis

A tumor in certain parts of the brain can lead to weakness or paralysis on one side of the body. This might manifest as difficulty with movement or even facial drooping, affecting daily activities and mobility.

Gradual loss of limb sensation or movement

Feeling a gradual decrease in sensation or the ability to move your limbs can be a symptom of a brain tumor. This could feel like numbness or tingling in your hands, feet, or other parts of your body.

Fatigue or changes in sleep

Excessive tiredness that doesn't improve with rest can be a symptom of a brain tumor. Changes in your sleep patterns, such as insomnia or sleeping more than usual, can also be indicative of a brain tumor.

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