Is pseudotumor cerebri serious?
Pseudotumor cerebri is a medical condition that causes increased pressure inside the skull (intracranial pressure). This is due to increased fluid accumulation inside the skull. This fluid called cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) is produced inside the brain cavities and lubricates the coverings of the brain. Either increased CSF production or reduced absorption can cause CSF to accumulate. Pseudotumor cerebri can cause serious and permanent complications if left untreated. It can cause progressive and permanent loss of vision. Thus, people with pseudotumor cerebri must go for regular eye exams and checkups so that eye problems are diagnosed and treated before they progress.
In some people, pseudotumor cerebri may recur after treatment. Therefore, regular checkups by the doctor are important to help monitor symptoms and screen for any underlying problems.
What is pseudotumor cerebri?
The term pseudotumor cerebri means a false brain tumor because several symptoms of this condition mimic a brain tumor. It occurs in certain susceptible individuals who are on medications to treat cancer or even acne. It is a medical condition in which there is increased pressure inside the skull due to buildup or reduced absorption of the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF, the fluid present inside the skull). Pseudotumor cerebri is also called idiopathic intracranial hypertension because there is no obvious cause of increased intracranial pressure in this condition. It causes symptoms such as headache and loss of vision that get worse with time. Pseudotumor cerebri can affect anyone. However, it is most common in women between 20 and 50 years of age.
Depending on the onset and duration of symptoms, pseudotumor cerebri can be one of two types
What are the symptoms of pseudotumor cerebri?
The symptoms of pseudotumor cerebri often mimic those of a brain tumor. The signs and symptoms include
- Blurred vision
- Diplopia (double vision)
- Loss of vision
- Nausea with or without vomiting
- Neck stiffness
- Difficulty walking
- Tinnitus (ringing in the ear)
Can pseudotumor cerebri be cured?
Pseudotumor cerebri can be treated by medications and surgery. The condition, however, may recur in some people despite treatment. Therefore, regular checkups by the doctor are important to help monitor symptoms and screen for any underlying problems.
Treatment options may vary depending on several factors such as the presence of any underlying conditions and severity of signs and symptoms. Treatment for pseudotumor cerebri can include
- Weight loss may be needed in individuals who are obese or overweight through lifestyle changes or surgery.
- Limiting the intake of fluids or salt is recommended.
- Surgical options to reduce intracranial pressure, such as therapeutic shunting that involves surgical placement of a shunt (a special kind of tube) to drain cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) from the lower spine into the abdomen, may be needed. This will remove excess CSF and relieve the intracranial pressure.
- A spinal tap or removal of excess fluid through a lumbar puncture may be done to reduce the pressure.
- Medications may be given to reduce fluid buildup and CSF pressure. These include diuretics that will help remove excess fluid from the body.
Health Solutions From Our Sponsors
Top Is Pseudotumor Cerebri Serious Related Articles
DizzinessDizziness is a symptom that often applies to a variety of sensations including lightheadedness and vertigo. Causes of dizziness include low blood pressure, heart problems, anemia, dehydration, and other medical conditions. Treatment of dizziness depends on the cause.
Dizziness: Causes, Symptoms, and TreatmentDizziness is a general term used to describe a range of sensations, such as feeling faint, light-headed, weak, or unsteady. Dizziness can create a false sense of a person’s head spinning or spinning of the surroundings or swaying.
Headaches can be divided into two categories: primary headaches and secondary headaches. Migraine headaches, tension headaches, and cluster headaches are considered primary headaches. Secondary headaches are caused by disease. Headache symptoms vary with the headache type. Over-the-counter pain relievers provide short-term relief for most headaches.
Headaches QuizIf you're plagued with headaches, our Headaches Quiz may help you identify causes, triggers, symptoms, and treatments for headache pain caused by different types of headaches such as migraines, sinus, cluster, tension, or stress.
Migraine HeadacheMigraine headache is a type of headache associated with a sensitivity to light, smells, or sounds, eye pain, severe pounding on one side of the head, and sometimes nausea and vomiting. The exact cause of migraine headaches is not known. Triggers for migraine headaches include certain foods, stress, hormonal changes, strong stimuli (loud noises), and oversleeping. Treatment guidelines for migraines include medicine, pain management, diet changes, avoiding foods that trigger migraines, staying hydrated, getting adequate sleep, and exercising regularly. Prevention of migraine triggers include getting regular exercise, drinking water daily, reducing stress, and avoiding trigger foods.
Migraine HeadachesIs it a headache or a migraine? Learn what a migraine is, causes, symptoms, treatments, and at-home remedies.
Migraines SlideshowWhat does a migraine headache feel like compared to a tension headache? Learn to spot migraine symptoms early, how to identify your triggers, and get more information on migraine headache medications and treatments. Learn to tell migraine from other types of headaches.
Nausea and Vomiting
Nausea is an uneasiness of the stomach that often precedes vomiting. Nausea and vomiting are not diseases, but they are symptoms of many conditions. There are numerous cases of nausea and vomiting. Some causes may not require medical treatment, for example, motion sickness, and other causes may require medical treatment by a doctor, for example, heart attack, lung infections, bronchitis, and pneumonia.
Some causes of nausea and vomiting may be life-threatening, for example, heart attack, abdominal obstruction, and cancers.
Treatment of nausea and vomiting depends upon the cause.
Neck Pain and DizzinessNeck pain is any degree of discomfort in the front or back of the neck between the head and the shoulders. Dizziness is characterized as either vertigo with disequilibrium or lightheadedness associated with feeling faint or the potential to lose consciousness. Causes of neck pain and dizziness vary, and treatment depends on the cause. With any unexplained or persisting neck pain or dizziness, consult with a health care professional, who can determine whether the symptoms are harmless and temporary or serious and threatening.
Pseudotumor Cerebri (Idiopathic Intracranial Hypertension)Pseudotumor Cerebri (intracranial hypertension) is a condition where there is an increase in pressure of fluid surrounding the brain and spinal cord (cerebrospinal fluid or CSF) mimicing a brain tumor. The cause is unknown. The most common symptom is headache but also include eye-pain, vision loss and double vision. Pseudotumor cerebri is diagnosed with MRI or CAT scans and treated by discontinuing offending medications (if applicable), weight loss and diuretic medications. The condition can also be helped by repeated drainage of spinal fluid using the lumbar puncture.
Tinnitus is described as a throbbing, ringing, clicking, or buzzing in one or both ears. Tinnitus is caused by trauma to the ear, over exposure to loud noises, medication, and diseases or infections of the ear such as multiple sclerosis, TMJ, autistic neruoma, Meniere's disease, hearing loss, and aging. Treatments include medication, tinnitus masking, retraining therapy, and relief therapy.
Tinnitus QuizIs tinnitus just a nuisance or a symptom of a serious medical condition? Take the Tinnitus Quiz to find out!
Tinnitus SlideshowWhat is tinnitus? Explore tinnitus (ringing in the ears) causes, symptoms, relief remedies, treatments and prevention tips. Learn about pulsatile tinnitus.
How Do You Get Rid of Ringing in the Ears (Tinnitus)?
Tinnitus is not a condition in itself, but a symptom of some other condition that causes a high-pitched whine, a ringing, buzzing or clicking in the ears. It can come from any number of problems starting with the eardrum and cochlea – the organs that turn sound waves into electrical signals for the brain to interpret as sound.
What Are the Different Types of Headaches?Pain originating in any region of the face, head or neck is called headache. This pain can be dull or severe and localized to the face, skull or neck. The head is the most common site of pain in the body. Types include tension headache, migraines, cluster headaches and others.