What Is Glioblastoma Cancer?

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Glioblastoma cancer is a highly malignant form of brain cancer that occurs in the star-shaped cells, or astrocytes, that make up the brain’s supportive tissue, according to the American Brain Tumor Association. Because of the massive network of blood vessels that feed this area of the brain, glioblastoma cancer cells tend to reproduce rapidly, making it a fast-growing type of cancer.

Glioblastomas are typically found in the cerebral area of the brain, although they can also occur in the spinal cord and other regions of the brain. They are usually made up of a mix of different types of cells, including calcium deposits, cystic minerals, mixed grade cells and blood vessels.

The symptoms of glioblastoma cancer include headache, drowsiness, vomiting and nausea. Other symptoms may include memory difficulties, trouble speaking, weakness that is generalized to one side of the body, and changes in vision, depending on the location of the glioblastoma. The symptoms caused generally occur due to an increase in intracranial pressure due to the growth of the glioblastoma.

Around 17 percent of all primary brain tumors are glioblastomas. More men than women develop this type of brain cancer, and the risk of developing it increases with aging. The cause of glioblastoma cancer is unknown.