Spinal Cancer or Spinal Tumor
Generally in adults the back pain may be associated with many reasons.
Most of them being due to the daily physical activities and some may be due to various health problems.
Few cases are unfortunately due to the spinal cancer or the growth of spinal tumor within or near the spinal cord or bones of the spine.
Not all tumors are cancerous. But whether cancerous or noncancerous tumors the back pain is common and this may lead to several other serious health problems if left untreated. The cancerous spinal tumor growth leads to the spinal cancer.
Spinal Tumor or Spinal Cancer Symptoms
As mentioned above the foremost and most common symptom of spinal cancer or spinal tumor is back pain. If left untreated this pain may spread to hips, legs, feet and arms too. (Severe Prolonged Back Pain - Spinal Cancer Sign!)
Other spinal cancer or spinal tumor symptoms depending on the location and the type of the tumor are as follows:
- In legs region loss of sensation or muscle weakness may be experienced
- Walking becomes difficulty and sometimes leads to falls
- Due to the growth of spinal tumors the nerves get compressed and in turn lead to paralysis
- Pain, heat and cold may not be sensed by the body parts
- Loss of bladder function or bowel functions
- Spinal deformity called Scoliosis may result from a large but benign tumor
The progression of spinal tumors varies depending on their types. In general, malignant tumors responsible for spinal cancer grow quickly, whereas benign tumors may develop slowly without causing any problems and sustain for years later causing problems.
Spinal Tumor or Spinal Cancer Treatment
Before starting with the spinal cancer or the spinal tumor treatment certain analysis should be made. This is because the elimination of this spinal tumor is very complicated and has a high risk of damage to the surrounding tissues and nerves which may lead to some other complications.
The age of the patient, the overall health, the location and size of the tumor and whether the tumor is primary or secondary should be taken into account before considering any treatment.
The spinal cancer or spinal tumor or spinal cord cancer treatment options include:
This method of treatment is opted when the tumors can be removed easily causing very minimal damage to the surrounding nerves. Recent techniques and equipment have made this possible in a better way giving a great chance of cure and better life to the patient. To the advanced research in technology the tumors which where inaccessible once are removed today with less efforts.
Unfortunately surgery does not serve the purpose of treatment for all tumors. In advanced cases surgery may not be able to remove the tumors as these tumors may have metastasized.
Radiation therapy is the only opted method of treatment for metastatic tumors which uses the high energy radiations. This method of treatment may be used either before surgery or after surgery.
The post surgery use may be to remove if any fragments of the tumor are doubted to be left after surgery and the pre surgery use will be to shrink the tumors as maximum as possible making the surgery much easy.
The chemotherapy uses drugs for the treatment of spinal cancer though this method is not much beneficial. The reason is that these drugs can't cross the blood-brain barrier which is a complicated network of fine blood vessels and cells. This barrier filters the blood entering the central nervous system so these chemotherapy drugs don’t serve the purpose of treatment.
Because surgery and radiation therapy methods of spinal cancer or spinal cord cancer treatment cause inflammation inside the spinal cord certain corticosteroids are prescribed by the doctors in order to reduce the swelling, either following surgery or during radiation treatments of spinal cancer.