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Brain Cancer Essay

989 words - 4 pages

The brain is made up of millions upon millions of cells. These cells are formed from before birth, up until about 7 years old. Once these brain cells stop dividing, they are never meant to divide again. You can see that the division of brain cells is under strict regulation and control. When this control is lost in a single cell, then it starts dividing in an uncontrolled manner. All of the data obtained through research on cancer shows that this disease is caused by a rapidly dividing cell, with no regulators to stop it from dividing. As the cell makes more and more copies of itself, it grows to form a tumor. This is known as cancer.

When a tumor is developed on the brain, it is called a brain tumor or brain cancer. Brain tumors can be malignant or benign, both being dangerous when it comes to the brain. When a brain cancer is malignant, it could potentially invade and destroy important tissues and cells. These malignant tumors can also spread to other parts of the body. However, benign tumors are very slow-growing cells, which hardly ever spread to other parts of the body.
                                             
Both of these types of cancer are dangerous when it comes to the brain. Since the skull is unable to expand while the tumor is growing, pressure is put on the brain. The pressure on the brain can result in damaged brain tissue. If left untreated, both types of brain cancer can lead to death.

Early detection of cancer is important to prevent it from becoming life threatening. Detecting a tumor while it is still in an early stage is the best predictor of long-term survival. A cancer-related checkup is recommended every three years for people aged 20 to 40 and every year for people over age 40.

Scientists do not fully understand the causes of cancer, but studies show that some people are more likely to develop the disease than others. One of the greatest risk factors for cancer is prolonged or repeated exposure to carcinogens, which are chemicals that cause cellular damage. The details of how carcinogens cause cancer remain unclear, but one theory states that exposure to carcinogens causes an increase in chemicals in the body called free radicals. These radicals take electrons from cellular components of the body, such as DNA. This makes genes more vulnerable to the effects of carcinogens. These carcinogens result for up to 30% of all cancer-related deaths. Another cause of cancer is exposure to radiation, which damages certain parts of DNA which could code for cell growth regulators.

Heredity also plays a role in the development of cancer. If a person’s relatives have a history of cancer, then that person has a higher risk of developing cancer. Genetic variations, particularly those influencing how the body responds to carcinogens, may create a greater vulnerability to cancer.

Brain cancer is usually accompanied at first by headaches and seizures. Later symptoms could include nausea, vomiting, fever, change in...

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