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Tags: Cancer | beau | biden | death | brain | cancer

Beau Biden's Death: 5 Facts About Brain Cancer

Tuesday, 02 June 2015 04:02 PM

Joseph "Beau" Biden's recent death from brain cancer at age 46 has shone a spotlight on the lethal form of the disease.

Biden, the son of Vice President Joe Biden and former attorney general of Delaware, died May 30 from the rare form of cancer, which accounts for just 1.4 percent of all new cancer cases in the United States, according to the National Cancer Institute, Live Science reports.

Here are five facts about brain cancer:

No. 1: Brain tumor types vary. Brain tumors occur when cells in the brain grow abnormally or when cancers spread from other parts of the body to the brain. The Johns Hopkins School of Medicine estimates that there are more than 120 types of primary brain tumors. In 2015, there will be an estimated 22,850 new cases of malignant brain tumors, and 15,320 deaths due to malignant brain tumors, in the United States.

No. 2: Causes are unknown. One of the mysteries of brain cancer is what causes the disease. Most people with brain cancer don't have any known risk factors for the disease, but a few factors can increase risks. Among them: a type of radiation called ionizing radiation, used to treat certain cancers, and genetic mutations.

No. 3: It can occur at any age.
Brain tumors can occur in both children and adults. In adults, meningiomas and gliomas are the most common brain tumors in adults, according to the National Institutes of Health.

No. 4: Headaches can be a symptom.
Headaches that get worse over time are a common symptom of brain tumors. But brain tumors can cause a number of other symptoms, including blurred vision, problems with balance, seizures, and personality changes.

No. 5: Cellphones aren't a proven cause. Most studies have not found a link between cellphone use and brain tumors. Cellphones emit radio-frequency energy, which can be absorbed by tissues. But so far, the only known biological effect of this energy, which is also emitted by microwave ovens, is a tiny rise in temperature, the National Cancer Institute says. Between 1987 and 2007 —when cellphone use rose rapidly — there was no increase in diagnoses of brain cancer in the United States, the NCI says.

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Joseph 'Beau' Biden's death from brain cancer at age 46 has shone a spotlight on the lethal form of the disease.
beau, biden, death, brain, cancer
Tuesday, 02 June 2015 04:02 PM
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