Tuesday, 25 September 2012

WOTD: Astrocytoma

An MRI scan showing an astrocytoma. Photograph: Mayfield Clinic

"Astrocytoma" - A type of cancerous brain tumour. Astrocytomas are the most common type of glioma, a tumour arising from glial (supporting) cells in the nervous system. They most commonly develop in the cerebrum (the main mass of the brain). Astrocytomas are classified in four grades (I-IV) according to their rate of growth and malignancy. The most severe and common type is called glioblastoma multiforme. Symptoms are similar to those of other types of brain tumour. Diagnostic tests include CT scanning or MRI. Treatment is with surgery and, in some cases, radiotherapy and/or chemotherapy.

"astrocytoma". British Medical Association (2007). Illustrated Medical Dictionary. 2nd ed. London: Dorling Kindersley (DK). p56.

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