Glioblastoma Awareness Day

Glioblastoma Awareness Day
19 Jul 2023
9 mins
Table Of Content
Glioblastoma Awareness Day

    "Glioblastoma may be rare, 

    but its impact is profound.”

    On every third Wednesday of July, glioblastoma awareness day is celebrated. The National Brain Tumor Society launched this glioblastoma awareness day event in 2019 to advocate for the survivors and remember the deceased who battled this devastating disease. The objective of observing Glioblastoma day is to ramp up the trials related to drugs that are supportive in targeting the tumor and destroying the cancer cells. Thereby, the patient outcomes are improved with a better life span. 


    What Is Glioblastoma? 


    Glioblastoma is a tumor developed from star-shaped nerve cells called astrocytes in the brain. It is known as a grade IV astrocytoma which is a rapidly growing and aggressive brain tumor. Astrocytes are important because they play a strong supportive tissue for brain functions. Glioblastoma is an aggressive type of cancer as it evolves rapidly and affects the brain and spinal cord. It can be formed as tumors in the astrocytes that are richly supplied with blood vessels. These tumors can invade normal brain tissues as they contain ample blood vessels and dead cells within them. Glioblastomas are characterized by their rapid growth, invasive behavior, and the development of abnormal blood vessels. Unfortunately, they often resist various treatment options and can metastasize to other brain areas.


    Goal Of Glioblastoma Awareness Day


    The purpose of this blog is to increase awareness about glioblastoma and offer valuable information and support to patients, families, and caregivers. The goal is to share stories that inspire hope, highlight survivorship, and discuss advancements in research. In addition, this awareness day will provide details about clinical trials, support groups, and other helpful resources.


    Glioblastoma In India


    In India, Glioblastoma cases account for almost 38% of commonly diagnosed cancers. Based on the latest study, it is found that the incidence of glioblastoma is higher in males compared to females, and most of them belonged to the active age group, i.e., between 18-60 years of age. GBM makes up almost half of all adult brain cancers. Globally, Glioblastoma has an incidence of 3.21 per 100,000 population.


    Did You Know?


    Glioblastoma multiforme is a cancer that only destroys the brain tissue massively and does not spread to other body parts.


    Causes Of Glioblastoma


    The development of glioblastoma does not have a specific theory. While the exact causes are not fully understood, there are several factors that are believed to contribute to its occurrence.


    • Hereditary
    • Head injury
    • Exposure to radiation, vinyl compounds, nitroso compounds

    Symptoms Of Glioblastoma


    Glioblastoma is the hardest cancer to spot, as the symptoms appear nonspecific in their primary stages. The symptoms are presented based on the location and size of the tumor, and the most common symptoms are:


    • Disorganized speech
    • Visual impairment
    • Reduced coordination on one side of the body
    • On and off seizure
    • Fatigue
    • Headache
    • Nausea
    • Memory problems
    • Vomiting


    Diagnosis Of Glioblastoma


    • Neurological examination: It involves a set of investigations that include vision tests, hearing and coordination tests to identify the affected areas of the brain
    • MRI, CT, and PET scans: These diagnostic tests are performed to locate the tumor and determine its size. It also helps to find if the cancer has widely spread.
    • Gene testing: To help with the prognosis, the doctor may order gene mutation testing to detect the therapeutic drug targets and plan the treatment.

    Treatment For Glioblastoma


    Although there is no definite cure for his cancer, there are treatment options that help in reducing the pain and symptoms. The objective of the treatment is to improve the quality of life and well-being of the patient. The standard of treatment involves radiation therapy and chemotherapy. It is imperative to seek medical advice immediately after being diagnosed with glioblastoma because experts state that untreated cases may result in death.


    • Surgery: It involves the removal of a tumor without affecting the surrounding nerves and brain tissues. The extracted tumor will then be sent to the laboratory study to confirm the glioblastoma diagnosis.
    • Radiation therapy: Radiation therapy utilizes high-energy beams to target and kill tumor cells following surgery. Proton therapy and interstitial radiation therapy are the commonly involved methods.
    • Chemotherapy: Chemotherapy involves the use of drugs to destroy cancer cells throughout the body. It can be administered prior to or after surgery or in combination with other treatment modalities.
    • Targeted therapy: Targeted therapy employs drugs targeting certain molecules in cancer cells. This approach can be utilized as a standalone treatment or in combination with other therapies.
    • Immunotherapy: Immunotherapy harnesses the power of the body's immune system to combat cancer cells. It can be used alone or in combination with other treatments to enhance the immune response against glioblastoma.

    Myth Busting


    Myth: Cell phones are a cause of glioblastoma. 

    Fact: This claim lacks scientific evidence. Multiple studies have failed to establish a connection between cell phone use and brain cancer, including glioblastoma. Despite the increase in cell phone usage, the incidence of glioblastoma has remained relatively stable. 

    Myth: Glioblastoma has no cure. 

    Fact: While there is currently no cure for glioblastoma, there are treatment options available that can extend life expectancy and improve the quality of life for patients. These treatments include surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy, targeted therapy, and immunotherapy. 

    Myth: Glioblastoma is always fatal. 

    Fact: Although glioblastoma is an aggressive form of cancer, there are cases where individuals have survived for many years. While the average survival rate is around 15-18 months, some patients have surpassed 10 years or more with the disease, thanks to advancements in treatments and individual variability. 


    Myth: Glioblastoma is solely caused by genetics. 

    Fact: When genetics can contribute to the development of glioblastoma, there are additional factors involved, such as exposure to radiation, environmental toxins, and head injuries are the major factors that can play a role in the onset of glioblastoma.


    Myth: Glioblastoma chemotherapy always leads to hair loss. 

    Fact: Hair loss is not a common side effect of chemotherapy used for glioblastoma. However, radiation therapy to the brain is a part of glioblastoma treatment. Hair loss from chemotherapy is temporary; it can regrow after a few weeks. 


    Together Shine A Light On Glioblastoma


    Glioblastoma does not discriminate on age, gender, background, and walk of life. It can affect anyone at any time. On this Glioblastoma Awareness Day, learn more about this disease and the available advanced treatments and specialists. Let's join hands to create awareness and enhance the voice of the glioblastoma community for better treatment.


    “Glioblastoma may be tough, 

    but so are the warriors fighting it.”

    Written by
    Aswini Priya VelmuruganMedical Content Writer
    AboutMaster in Biotechnology
    Tags :Glioblastoma awareness day Glioblastoma day Glioblastoma causes Glioblastoma symptoms Glioblastoma treatment Glioblastoma myth busting