Learn about different brain tumour types, their origins, and behaviours.
There are more than 120 types of brain and central nervous system (CNS) tumours?
This section describes the most frequently diagnosed types of brain tumours.
Update on the classifications of brain tumours:
Brain Tumour Foundation of Canada, and many other medical organizations around the world, refer to the World Health Organization (WHO) classification system to identify brain tumours. The WHO classifies brain tumours by cell origin and how the cells behave, from the least aggressive (non-malignant) to the most aggressive (malignant). Some brain tumour types are assigned a grade ranging from Grade I (non-malignant) to Grade IV (most malignant), which also signifies the rate of growth.
In May 2021, the WHO published an official reclassification of tumour types of the CNS, which helps doctors to diagnose more accurately, plan treatments accordingly and predict therapeutic response for patients. Details of the reclassification can be found here.
Please share with your health care providers and loved ones – we at Brain Tumour Foundation of Canada are trying to shift the language used when someone is diagnosed with a non-malignant brain tumour. We are encouraging members of our community to avoid using the word “benign” because we feel there is nothing benign about a tumour in someone’s control centre – the brain.