Brain Tumour Types

There are more than 120 types of brain tumours. To help identify a tumour's origin, behaviour and type, the disease is often classified or categorized into groupings. 

Brain tumours can be low- or high-grade, non-malignant or malignant, and primary or secondary (metastases). Many health care professionals also use the World Health Organization (WHO) classification system to signify a tumour's rate of growth and to help predict its behaviour.

Below is a list of the most common types of brain tumours; if you do not see a type listed for which you would like more information, please contact Janic Gorayeb, Senior Health Information Specialist, at 1-800-265-5106 ext. 233 or jgorayeb@braintumour.ca.

Pediatric Brain Tumours Gliomas Non-Malignant Brain Tumours Metastatic Brain Cancer Other Brain Tumours and Related Conditions
Atypical Teratoid / Rhaboid Tumour (AT/RT) Anaplastic astrocytoma Chordoma Metastatic brain tumours Brain cysts
Brainstem glioma Astrocytoma Craniopharyngioma   Dysembryoplastic Neuroepithelial Tumour (DNET)
Craniopharyngioma Brainstem glioma Meningioma   Germ cell tumours
Ependymoma Butterfly glioma Pituitary adenoma   Hemangioblastoma
Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) Diffuse astrocytoma Vestibular schwanomma (acoustic neuroma)    Neurofibromatosis Type 1
Juvenile pilocytic astrocytoma (JPA) Ependymoma     Neurofibromatosis Type 2
Medulloblastoma Ganglioglioma     Pineal tumours
Optic pathway glioma Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM)     Tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC)
Primitive neuroectodermal tumour (PNET) Glioma      
  Juvenile pilocytic astrocytoma (JPA)      
  Medulloblastoma      
  Oligoastrocytoma      
  Oligodendroglioma      
  Optic pathway glioma      
  Primitive neuroectodermal tumour (PNET)      
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Thank you

Thank you to the following Professional Advisory Group Members who reviewed the new Brain Tumour Type content:

Dr. Arjun Sahgal, Dr. Aru Narendran, Dr. Joseph Megeysi, Dr. Karen Goddard and Dr. Sal Dimaio 

Thank you to the following Professional Advisory Group Members for their input and guidance for this project:

Crystal Tellett, Dr. Bruce Crooks, Dr. David Eisenstat, Dr. James Perry, Marianne Lee, Maureen Daniels, Pam Del Maestro and Rosie Cashman

The brain tumour information provided in this section was updated September 2013.

For more information please see our Information Sheet on vestibular schwannomas.


If you have questions about any of the brain tumour information provided, please contact:

Janic Gorayeb 
Senior Health Information Specialist
jgorayeb@braintumour.ca
1-800-265-5106 or 519-642-7755, ext. 233

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