Since you were recently diagnosed with a brain tumor, ask your doctor these questions at your next visit.
1. What type of brain tumor do I have, and what is its grade?
2. What are the symptoms of brain cancer?
3. What part of my brain is affected by the tumor and what does this region of the brain do?
4. Will it be possible to surgically remove my tumor?
5. Will I need any other treatments such as chemotherapy or radiotherapy after surgery?
6. What are the possible side effects of these therapies?
Home hospice care is a way of providing pain and symptom relief, as well as emotional and spiritual support for the patient and the family, at home rather than in the hospital. It involves a multidisciplinary approach that may include a doctor or other health care provider, nurses, a pharmacist, aides, a social worker, a spiritual caregiver, and counselors.
Advance directives and living wills are legal documents that spell out specifically which treatments are to be given and which are to be withheld. For example, a person with advanced brain cancer may not want to be put on a ventilator (breathing machine) if he or she stops breathing. You have the right to make these decisions for yourself as long as you are mentally competent.
Author: Charles Davis, MD, PhD, Research Director, Professor of Emergency Medicine, Department of Surgery, Division of Emergency Medicine, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio.
Coauthor(s): Nitin Tandon, MD, Staff Physician, Department of Surgery, Division of Neurosurgery, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio.
Editors: Brian F Chinnock, MD, Assistant Professor, Department of Emergency Medicine, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center at El Paso; Francisco Talavera, PharmD, PhD, Senior Pharmacy Editor, eMedicine; Jerry Balentine, DO, Professor of Emergency Medicine, New York College of Osteopathic Medicine; Medical Director, Saint Barnabas Hospital.