Causes of Brain Tumors

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Causes of Brain Tumors

Although it is difficult to find exact causes of brain tumors, following are considered major risk factors of brain tumors. 

Family History & Heredity

Conditions like brain tumor can be passed on by generations and hence your family history or the presence of brain tumor or cancer running in your family can greatly affect your chances of getting a brain tumor. The cells in our body are filled with DNA, which is a chemical compound that makes our genes. The genes determine how the cells will function and a change in DNA inside the cells may cause the rapid cell multiplication to occur.

There are primarily two types of genes in our body-

  • The oncogenes which are responsible for healthy growth and multiplication.
  • The tumor suppressor genes that help keep the cell division under control by making the existing cells die so that the new healthy cells can replace them.


Brain tumor or possible cancer risks are caused when by either the oncogenes turning on or the tumor suppressor genes turning off causing an imbalance in the brain.

Past Medical Conditions

The risks of getting brain tumor is higher if you’ve suffered from cancer in the past. Medical science says, cancer cells stay dormant for years and may suddenly start reacting which is why the presence of cancer in your body once could be one of the primary reasons why rapid cell multiplication or spread of a dormant cancerous cell can still react in a different time. Usually, patients with leukaemia or non-Hodgkin Lymphoma as an adult may risk possible brain tumor conditions later in their years. This also includes childhood cancer conditions.

Exposure to Radiation

Repeated exposure to radiation can be one of the reasons for brain tumor. This can be due to a workplace hazard or due to chemo or radiation therapy as a part of the cancer treatment module. Repeated imaging tests like CT scan or MRI too can trigger this condition.

There is yet another type of radiation that we are all exposed to. Mobiles and power lines emit non-ionising radiation. The radiation in these are much lower and subtle than X-Ray or MRI radiations. However, repeated usage for a prolonged period of time can gradually lead to a possible case of brain tumor.

Low Immunity

Some medical conditions caused due to low immunity may also be one of the reasons for a probable brain tumor. Patients suffering from HIV or AIDS were more prone to brain tumor than the general population, according to a medical study.


Even though there is no particular age bracket for brain tumor, doctors have studied the pattern and concluded that your risks of getting a brain tumor gets higher as you age.


Though rare, being overweight could be one of the reasons for brain tumor. Every year 2% of the population suffers a brain tumor risk due to obesity, and this is more common in obese women or children rather than men.

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