Oakwood Solicitors

Brain Cancer

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What Is Brain Cancer / Brain Tumour?

Brain tumours form in the brain due to cells that have grown in an abnormal manner.

There are two kinds of tumours:

  • Cancerous Cells (Malignant) – They grow faster and have a propensity to spread to other organs of the body. They also have the likelihood to grow back after treatment.
  • Non-Cancerous Cells (Benign) – They grow slower and tend to stay localised. They can, however, become malignant and may cause a host of other problems.

15 out of 100 people diagnosed and treated as suffering from brain cancer will go on to survive over five years with brain tumours.

Brain Cancer

What Are The Symptoms Of A Brain Tumour?

The symptoms of brain cancer can vary and will often depend on where the tumour is found, how fast it is growing and its size. General symptoms can include:-

Brain Cancer Symptoms

What Are The Types Of Brain Tumours?

There are various different forms of brain tumours and they each have different symptoms and treatments:

  • Acoustic neuroma.
  • Astrocytoma.
  • Brain metastases.
  • Choroid plexus carcinoma.
  • Cranopharyngioma.
  • Embroyonal tumours.
  • Ependymoma.
  • Glioblasstoma.
  • Glioma.
  • Medulloblastoma.
  • Meningioma.
  • Oligodendrolglioma.
  • Paediatric brain tumours.
  • Poneoblastoma.
  • Pituitary tumours.

If the brain tumour has spread it can then lead to breast, colon, kidney or lung cancers or melanoma (cancer affecting the skin or sometimes the eyes mouth or colon).

Who Is Affected?

Brain cancer can affect anyone at any age. They are however more common in older people.

Each year 9,000 people are diagnosed with brain tumours. 50% of these are cancerous.

What Are The Causes?

There are a variety of different reasons why a person gets brain tumours.

  • Age – Older people are more likely to get brain tumours. However, it depends on the kind of tumour, some of which are common in younger children.
  • Previous cancers – Adults who had cancer as children (such as leukaemia) can often be at risk of getting a brain tumour later in life. Some cancers (such as bone cancer) have a high chance of spreading to the brain.
  • Radiation – People who have had radiotherapy, CT scans or X-Rays can be more at risk of brain tumours.
  • Genetics – Some genetic or family hereditary conditions may lead to a greater risk of a brain tumour, such as Turner syndrome or neurofibromatosis.
  • HIV or AIDS – You are twice as likely to get a brain tumour if you suffer from HIV/Aids.



How Is It Diagnosed?

The first port of call is to visit and speak to your GP. If there are concerns then they may refer you to a specialist for further tests:-

  • Neurological examination – A specialist will examine the patient to check on their vision, balance and coordination.
  • CT scan – This is where an X-Ray and a computer are used to build up a detailed picture of the body.
  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan.
  • Angiogram – This kind of X-Ray shows blood vessels that supply the tumour.
  • Spinal Tap – Fluid is removed from the lower spinal area using a hollow needle.
  • Blood tests – They can be used to diagnose certain tumours.
  • Biopsy – A small tissue sample will be taken from the brain and examined to test if the cells are cancerous or not.

How Are Brain Tumours Treated?

The correct treatment for removal of the tumour depends on the patient’s fitness, where the tumour is, the kind of tumour and how big it is. Treatments for brain tumours include:

  • Steroids (dexamethasone, prednisolone, methylprednisolone) – These drugs try and reduce the inflammation and try to treat the cancer.
  • Surgery – there are different kinds of surgery:
    • Remove the tumour entirely.
    • Remove fluid that has built up on the brain, which also know as hydrocephalus.
    • Remove some of the tumour and follow up with other treatments such as chemotherapy and radiotherapy.
  • Chemotherapy – Drugs are injected to destroy the cancer cells.
  • Radiotherapy – Radiation is used to treat the cancer cells.
    • Stereotactic radiotherapy – this uses high doses of radiotherapy directly to the tumour.
    • Radiosurgery – this is a stronger amount of stereotactic radiotherapy.

How Do I Make A Claim?

Brain cancer can often be secondary or if it is the primary cancer, the signs and symptoms can often be misdiagnosed as another condition, particularly by the GP.

Early diagnosis of brain cancer and early treatment will result in better outcomes.

If you have been the victim of an unnecessary delay in diagnosis or delay in receiving treatment, you may be entitled to compensation.  Contact one of our specialist team today who will be able to assist you further.

Who Can Make A Claim?

The victim of the negligence can bring about a claim. However, it can sadly be the case that the patient is no longer with us. In such circumstances, the executor of the estate and/or the surviving dependents may be able to bring about an action.

Our specialist team will be able to advise whether you are able to bring about a claim and answer any questions you have on a no obligation free consultation.

How Long Do I Have To Bring About A Claim?

Claims of this nature are time sensitive. As a victim of negligence, you will have three years to commence Court proceedings from either the date the negligence occurred or the date you became aware that negligence had occurred.

Claims brought on behalf of deceased loved ones are subject to a three year period to bring about a claim from the date of death.

Our specialist team will talk you through timeframes and answer any questions you may have.  As these claims are lengthy to conclude the sooner you start investigations into a claim the better.

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How Long Will My Case Take To Run?

Given the complexities involved in pursuing Clinical Negligence claims, they can often take 18-24 months to conclude and longer if Court proceedings have to be issued.

Our investigations start by obtaining all relevant records and protocols before approaching independent medical experts for their opinion. We will provide you with regular updates on the progress of your case to ensure that you are kept up to speed.

How Much Is My Claim Worth?

It is often difficult to value Clinical Negligence claims at their outset given the complexities involved. However, we will pursue two forms of compensation for you:

  • General damages – An award of money for the pain and suffering you have endured as a result of the negligence.
  • Special damages – An award of money for all of your out-of-pocket expenses, such as travel, medication costs, loss of earnings, and treatment costs both past and future. This list is not exhaustive and is very case specific.

Why Use Oakwood Solicitors To Make Your Clinical Negligence Case?

We have a dedicated team of solicitors and paralegals who have many years’ experience between them in running cases of this nature. They are highly trained to deal with all aspects of clinical negligence.

We want to ensure that clients are not overwhelmed by legal jargon, medical terms that they don’t understand and aim to allow the claims procedure to be as transparent as possible.



How is My Case Funded?

The majority of Clinical Negligence cases are funded by a Conditional Fee Agreement, more commonly known as a ‘no-win, no-fee’ agreement. This means that there will be nothing to pay up front and nothing to pay if the claim has been lost. If you are successful in your claim, a deduction of 25% of damages will be taken to cover the success fee and the shortfall in legal fees.

It may also be the case that an After The Event (ATE) insurance policy will be obtained to cover the costs of expensive medical reports and investigations.

If an ATE insurance policy has to be obtained, the cost of the same will be discussed with you at the appropriate point. The cost of the ATE insurance policy is again taken from your damages and only payable if you are successful with your claim.

Charities/Useful Websites


Brain Tumour Research

The Brain Tumour Charity


If your brain tumour or brain cancer diagnosis was delayed or initially missed entirely, get in touch today for a free initial consultation. Choose one of the methods on the right-hand side of this page, or call us on 0113 200 9787 to find out how we can help you.

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Meet the Head of Department

Carol Cook

Head of Department - Medical Negligence

0113 200 9780

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