The brain and spinal column make up the central nervous system (CNS), where all vital functions of the body are controlled. When tumors arise in the central nervous system, they are especially problematic because a persons thought processes and movements can be affected. These tumors can also be difficult to treat because the tissues surrounding a tumor that may be affected by surgery or radiation may play a vital role in functioning.

There are two main types of brain cancer. Primary brain cancer starts in the brain. Metastatic brain cancer starts somewhere else in the body and moves to the brain. Brain tumors can be benign, with no cancer cells, or malignant, with cancer cells that grow quickly.

Alternative treatments have not been shown to cure brain tumors and should never be substituted for conventional therapy. However, complementary therapies (used with, not instead of, standard treatments) can help some patients cope with the stress of their illness and side effects of their treatment.

Meningiomas grow from the meninges. They are usually benign. Because these tumors grow very slowly, the brain may be able to adjust to their presence; meningiomas often grow quite large before they cause symptoms. They occur most often in women between 30 and 50 years of age.


Surgery is the preferred treatment for accessible meningiomas and is more successful for these tumors than most tumor types. For those with minor symptoms or an inaccessible tumor, close observation may be the first course of action. If the entire tumor is not removed surgically, or if it recurs, additional treatment such as radiation may be used. Stereotactic radiation is often preferred to reduce damage to healthy tissue. The effectiveness of chemotherapy and hormone therapy is being investigated in clinical trials.

Malignant brain cancer is one of the most lethal types of cancer in adults and is the second leading cause of cancer death in children. Many current ways of treating the disease fail to provide long-term management because they ineffectively target tumor cells and harm the health and vitality of normal brain cells.



Chemotherapy consists of a series of drugs that interfere with the normal functioning of the rapidly dividing cells of the tumor. This prevents the tumor from growing. Most of these chemotherapy drugs are given in combination so that they are most effective. Research is being conducted to determine the best combination of chemotherapy drugs to combat brain tumors. Some chemotherapy drugs are injected directly into the bloodstream while others can be taken by pill, at home.

The KetoCal diet gets around this dilemma by essentially starving the brain tumor cells of the sugary molecules on which they rely for growth and survival. Because of its special composition, the diet deprives the tumor cells of the glucose they need; at the same time, the diet provides normal brain cells with ketones, a class of organic compounds they can metabolize effectively but the tumor cells cannot.

Complementary and Alternative Medicines:

Complementary medicine is thought of as treatments used in addition to the conventional therapies your doctor may prescribe, such as using tai chi or massage in addition to prescription medicine for anxiety.

Alternative medicine is generally thought of as being used instead of conventional methods. For example, this might mean seeing a homeopath or naturopath instead of your regular doctor.

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