Monday, December 1, 2014

What Causes Brain Tumors?

I understand that sometimes the best solution to a health problem is to avoid getting it in the first place. For example, it seems like if you eat right and exercise, you reduce your chances of getting a heart attack or diabetes or similarly nasty diseases.

So, I visited several brain tumor sites and searched for the answers to this question: “What causes brain tumors?”

The ABTA website writes about this as “Risk Factors” -  At the top of the list of ABTA cited risk factors is “exposure to ionizing radiation.”

Since I had no idea what “ionizing radiation” is, I googled it and got this definition from the World Health Organization: “Energy emitted from a source is generally referred to as radiation. Examples include heat or light from the sun, microwaves from an oven, X rays from an X-ray tube, and gamma rays from radioactive elements.” See

This, of course, what got me all hot and bothered about having dental x-rays and you can read my blog posting/rant about that possible correlation with meningioma here - - because if you’ve had as many bitewing x-rays as I’ve had, your brain is probably hot and bothered, too.

Next, I tried the National Brain Tumor Society’s website:  And while I really like the NBTS, I didn’t see anything about how to avoid getting a brain tumor or reducing the risk.

So then I zipped over to the “Cancer Treatment Centers of America” website - - and learned that “The cause of brain cancer is still largely unknown. Although there are some genetic conditions and environmental factors which may contribute to the development of brain cancer, the risk factors are much less defined for brain cancer than for other cancers in the body.”

This, to me, seems awfully awful. We have lots of brain tumors a year as more that 688,000+ people are grappling with brain tumors in the U.S., let alone all the victims in the rest of the world.

Golly, with that many cases to analyze, interrogate or otherwise manipulate, I thought we’d have a better answer to this seemingly fundamental question.

If you know the answer, or have some clues, please email me. Or, better yet, please tell a high-powered researcher who will actually make use of the information.


PS – This all reminds me of Clifton Leaf’s seminal book entitled “The Truth in Small Doses: Why We’re Losing the War on Cancer – and How to Win It.” You can buy it for $12.00 (U.S.) on Amazon:

Copyright: <a href=''>eraxion / 123RF Stock Photo</a>


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