Virginia Commonwealth University

VCU Massey Cancer Center

Long-term outlook for a person with a brain tumor

Prognosis greatly depends on:

  • Type of tumor.
  • Extent of the disease.
  • Size and location of the tumor.
  • Presence or absence of metastasis.
  • The tumor’s response to therapy.
  • Your age, overall health and medical history.
  • Your tolerance of specific medications, procedures or therapies.
  • New developments in treatment.

As with any cancer, prognosis and long-term survival can vary greatly from individual to individual. Prompt medical attention and aggressive therapy are important for the best prognosis. Continuous follow-up care is essential for a person diagnosed with a brain tumor. Side effects of radiation and chemotherapy, as well as second malignancies, can occur in survivors of brain tumors.

Rehabilitation for lost motor skill and muscle strength may be required for an extended amount of time. Speech therapists and physical and occupational therapists may be involved in some form of rehabilitation. More research is needed to improve treatment, decrease side effects of the treatment for this disease and develop a cure. New methods are continually being discovered to improve treatment and to decrease side effects.