Dr. Kamal Thapar, MD., PhD., FRCSC., FAANS
1200 Oakleaf Way, Suite A, Altoona, WI 54720

Brain Tumors

Brain tumors are abnormal growths of tissue that develop within the brain. These abnormal growths can be benign. They can also be malignant, arising within the brain or spread to the brain from elsewhere in the body.


– In most cases, the development of a brain tumor is a spontaneous event without any cause. In a small proportion of patients, there may be a familial predisposition to developing a brain tumor. Patients with previous or coexisting cancer elsewhere in the body (lung, breast, or colon) can spread to the brain.


– Headaches

– Seizures

– Visual changes

– Personality changes

– Memory loss

– Fatigue

– Weakness or paralysis


Several imaging studies are required to confirm the diagnosis of a brain tumor, and to identify the locationĀ and size of tumor. This would likely include MRI and CT scans. A biopsy of the lesion may be necessary to identify the etiology.


Choice of treatment for a brain tumor depends on several factors including the size and location of the tumor, overall health of the patient and etiology of the tumor. For most tumors that arise within the brain, some form of surgical treatment is eventually required. This may include biopsy, tumor removal, or stereotactic radiosurgery (such as gamma knife or conventional radiation treatment).

For tumors that have arisen elsewhere in the body and have spread to the brain, a team of medical specialists including a neurosurgeon and oncologist will be involved in the treatment plan.