caucasian child suffering from cancer - caucasian child suffering from cancer

The Department of Health and Social Care has launched a new taskforce to bring together experts to develop new ways to detect, diagnose and treat cancers in children and young people. The initiative aims to save lives and mitigate the long-term effects of a cancer diagnosis for young people.

The announcement follows a two-year campaign by the Children’s Cancer and Leukaemia   Group and Young Lives vs Cancer, who have been calling for a dedicated plan to improve outcomes for young people with cancer. The two charities will be involved in the taskforce, along with Cancer Research UK and the Teenage Cancer Trust.

The taskforce will request better access to DNA testing and treatment, and more investment in research. It will also seek to explore how artificial intelligence can make the process of cancer diagnosis and treatment for young people more efficient and effective, and expand data sharing arrangements to help clinicians make better informed decisions.

The taskforce will be chaired by Dame Caroline Dineage MP. Health and Social Care Secretary, Victoria Atkins, said: “Discovering your child has cancer is among the worst news a parent can receive. Thanks to the remarkable progress in treatment and research, survival rates are higher than ever. However, even then, life-changing consequences can remain.”

She added: “This taskforce will help bring together world-leading experts and those who have dedicated their lives to fighting cancer to discuss how we can go further faster and to drive progress in cancer care for children and young people.”

“I am pleased we have such a respected figure as Dame Caroline leading the discussions and we look forward to working with all those on the taskforce to make child cancer care faster, simpler and fairer for all.”

Cancer is the leading cause of death in children up to 14 years old, and a major cause of death in young people in the UK. According to the Brain Tumour Charity, brain cancer is the biggest cancer killer of children and adults under 40 in the UK. However, less that 3% of the total annual cancer research funding is spent on brain tumours.

Brain tumours reduce life expectancy by an average of 27 years, and only 12% of adults survive for five years after a diagnosis. There are on average 500 young people under the age of 19 diagnosed with a brain tumour in the UK every year. Around half of these cases are gliomas, meaning that they originate from the glial cells.

Gliomas have various subgroups. Astrocytoma is the subgroup that makes up about 43% of all brain and spinal cord tumours in children. Other types of brain tumour that most commonly affect children are ependymomas, embryonal tumours, and craniopharyngioma. It is not yet understood what causes these childhood tumours.

Commenting on the launch of the cancer taskforce, Chief Executive at Young Lives vs Cancer, Rachel Kirby-Rider, said: “It’s a positive step that children and young people with cancer’s unique needs are getting the focus they deserve with the setup of a dedicated Children and Young People Cancer Taskforce.”

She added: “Alongside their health, cancer can completely disrupt a young person’s life both during and beyond treatment, from education, to mental health and finances. It’s reassuring that as well as improving treatment and research, the Children and Young People Cancer Taskforce aims to transform care and reduce the long-term impacts of cancer.”

Childhood brain tumours are usually treated with surgery, radiotherapy, or chemotherapy. The medical team will decide on the most appropriate course of treatment depending on the size, type, and location of the tumour and the age and general health of the child.

The long-term effects of a brain tumour on the child’s life will vary depending on the factors mentioned above and how it is treated. However, the consequences can be profound, including learning difficulties, vision problems, and impairments on normal growth, puberty, or physical abilities such as poor balance or weakness in a limb.

The child may also be left with emotional difficulties, either because of physical changes in the brain, or because of the trauma and social isolation they may experience due to the diagnosis and treatment of a brain tumour.


If you would like some more information about glioblastoma brain tumour treatment, please contact Mr George Samandouras of Amethyst Radiotherapy.

gamma knife surgery - woman with stress

Being diagnosed with a brain tumour can be a deeply traumatic experience. According to the Brain Tumour Charity, 91% of people they spoke to about the issue said that their tumour affected their mental or emotional health. This is perhaps unsurprising, given the disruption and discomfort that such a serious condition can bring.

There are many different ways in which a brain tumour can impact a person. The tumour itself may cause personality changes and trigger depression and anxiety. This is not inevitable, and everyone will experience the symptoms differently.

However, in some cases, it may cause mood swings or extremes of mood, a flattening of the emotions, irritability, aggression, a loss of inhibitions, or confusion and forgetfulness. These changes most often occur in frontal lobe tumours, because this is the area of the brain that controls our emotions and personality.

Swelling in the brain, caused by the tumour itself or by treatment, may lead to personality changes, although if the swelling is the result of treatment it should gradually subside, easing the symptoms. Medication may also cause or exacerbate mental problems in some people.

However, the stress of the diagnosis, treatment, and the disruption to finances, jobs, family, and other aspects of everyday life can understandably cause personality changes and emotional problems.

Sometimes, a persistent low mood may develop into clinical depression. This is characterised by intense feelings of sadness or hopelessness, outbursts of anger or irritability, and loss of interest or pleasure in activities that were previously enjoyed.

It may also lead to tiredness, excessive sleeping or difficulty sleeping, anxiety or agitation, reduced appetite or weight gain, disordered thinking, poor memery and difficulty concentrating, unfounded guilt, low self worth, and intrusive thoughts of self-harm or suicide.

The family and friends of the person living with the brain tumour may also be impacted with emotional problems, especially if they are directly involved in their care.

Severe cases of depression should be treated by a medical professional, as should any mental health problems that are caused by the tumour itself, rather than the shock and stress of a diagnosis.

However, mild depression may be relieved by some self-help tactics, such as talking honestly about the way you are feeling with someone you trust. This may be a family member, a friend, a counsellor, a health professional, or a member of a physical or virtual support network.

BBC News reports that Naseem’s Manx Brain Tumour Charity has received a grant from the Manx Lottery Trust to establish a therapeutic support service for people who have been diagnosed with brain tumours, and their families.

The charity was set up in 2009 by Geraldine Pishvaie after her teenage daughter Naseem was diagnosed with a terminal brain tumour. The support is designed to ease the emotional strain that such a serious health condition can bring.

Geraldine Pishvaie, from Naseem’s Manx Brain Tumour Charity, said: ‘Living with a diagnosis of brain tumour can be an incredibly uncertain and overwhelming time for both patients and caregivers. It becomes difficult for individuals to focus on activities and tasks that can benefit their well-being.”

She added: “This support is designed to empower individuals by providing them with essential skills to navigate the difficulties they encounter during this challenging period.’

Manx Lottery Trust chairman Stephen Turner said: ‘Naseem’s Manx Brain Tumour Charity has already made a significant impact on the lives of the people it supports. We are delighted to extend our support to this collaboration with Isle Listen, and we hope that many individuals will benefit from this project.’

Mild depression can be relieved with gentle exercise, such as a daily 20-minute walk, or even gardening or housework. Planning some enjoyable activities into your day, rather than things that you feel you ought to do, can also be helpful.

Brain tumours can be physically as well as mentally draining, so ensure that you get plenty of rest and sleep as much as you need to. It’s important to be kind to yourself and remember that your feelings are only natural.

Taking control of practical matters, such as finances, benefits, sick pay, childcare, and so on can make you feel more positive about yourself and able to cope.


If you are looking for more information about brain cancer and Gamma Knife surgery, please contact Mr Neil Kitchen of Amethyst Radiotherapy.

gamma knife surgery - scientist holding test tube with blood sample

Brain tumour treatment may be on the verge of a major breakthrough, as UK researchers have developed a simple blood test that could potentially diagnose certain types of brain cancer. The Guardian reports that the blood test could lead to an earlier diagnosis of cancer, increasing the chances of survival.

According to Cancer Research UK, just 11% of adults survive brain cancer for 10 years or more after diagnosis. On average, 12,288 new cases are diagnosed each year, and there are 5,456 deaths from brain tumours annually in the UK.

This makes it one of the most deadly cancers in the UK, leading to the deaths of more children and young people under 40 than any other type of cancer. Despite this, research into brain tumours has been historically neglected and underfunded compared to other types of cancer.

The new test could potentially make diagnosis much quicker and easier, eliminating the need for an invasive biopsy. Traditional forms of open brain surgery can be risky, particularly if the tumour is in a critical or difficult to access area of the brain. It also carries a high risk of complications, particularly for patients who are older or not in good overall health.

The test was developed by researchers at the Brain Tumour Research Centre of Excellence, run by Imperial College London and Imperial College healthcare NHS trust. The results of the first studies have shown great promise in diagnosing tumours, including glioblastomas, which are the most common type of high-grade tumour in adults.

The test works by isolating glial cells that have broken free from the tumour and entered the bloodstream. The isolated cells can be stained to make them stand out and analysed for specific indicators of disease. It is known as the TriNetra blood test. Earlier diagnosis can lead to earlier and more effective treatment, boosting survival rates.

Dr Nelofer Syed, who leads the Brain Tumour Research Centre of Excellence, said: “A non-invasive, inexpensive method for the early detection of brain tumours is critical for improvements in patient care.”

“There is still some way to go, but this solution could help people where a brain biopsy or surgical resection of the tumour is not possible due to the location of the tumour or other constraints.”

He added: “Through this technology, a diagnosis of inaccessible tumours can become possible through a risk-free and patient-friendly blood test. We believe this would be a world first as there are currently no non-invasive or non-radiological tests for these types of tumours.”

The test is targeted at gliomas. These are tumours that have developed from cells that should become healthy glial brain cells. Glial cells support the nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord. Glioma brain tumours can be low grade and benign, or high grade and cancerous.

Kevin O’Neill, consultant neurosurgeon at Imperial College healthcare NHS trust and honorary clinical senior lecturer at Imperial College London, who leads the Brain Tumour Research Centre of Excellence with Syed, told The Guardian: “This test is not just an indicator of disease, it is a truly diagnostic liquid biopsy.”

“It detects intact circulating tumour cells from the blood, which can be analysed to the same cellular detail as an actual tissue sample. It’s a real breakthrough for treatment of brain cancers that rarely spread around the body.

“This could help speed up diagnosis, enabling surgeons to apply tailored treatments based on that biopsy to increase patients’ chances of survival. I’m very grateful to everyone who has contributed to this study, especially the patients involved.”

Dan Knowles, CEO of Brain Tumour Research, said: “The research undertaken in UK universities is world class and something we should all be proud of, but we need so much more. There is an urgent need for novel approaches, particularly in the treatment of GBM, which is fatal in most cases.”

The researchers now plan to carry out larger studies and clinical trials to consolidate the early positive results. If they continue to prove to be highly accurate, it is possible that the blood test could be widely rolled out to patients in the UK within two years.


For more information about brain stem tumours, glioblastoma treatment, and Gamma Knife surgery, please contact Mr George Samandouras of Amethyst Radiotherapy.

Join us for a cutting-edge Gamma Knife Course on multidisciplinary stereotactic and advanced radiosurgery! This event features lectures and simulations led by experts from neurosurgery, interventional radiology, and medical physics teams.

From medical students to seasoned consultants, this course caters to all levels of interest groups. Please note that this is an in-person attendance only event.

Location: National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery, Queen Square, London

Date: Thursday 15th February 2024

Course Director: Mr. Neil Kitchen (Consultant Neurosurgeon)

Course Leads: Mr. Cornel Tancu (Neurosurgery Senior Clinical Fellow)

Coffee and lunch will be provided, offering ample networking opportunities. You’ll receive a Certificate of Attendance to showcase your commitment to advancing your knowledge in this field.

Secure your spot now!

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Gamma Knife Course

gamma knife surgery - doctor point brian scan image

Receiving a brain tumour diagnosis is a difficult experience, and there is a lot of new information to take in. Sometimes, a patient or their families may have some preconceived ideas about brain tumours that are based on common misconceptions rather than facts.

Here are some of the most common misunderstandings about brain tumours, and a look at what the reality of the situation is.


All brain tumours are cancerous

Brain tumours are not always cancerous (also described as malignant). They can also be non-cancerous (also described as benign). Cancerous brain tumours are more likely to grow quickly and spread to other parts of the body, and so require urgent treatment. However, it’s also important to be aware of the next point.


Benign brain tumours are not serious

Brain tumours that are non-cancerous (benign) can still cause serious symptoms, depending on the location in the brain. If the tumour is pressing on certain nerve cells or fibres, it can disrupt the messaging between the brain and the body, causing a range of symptoms. These can be serious, including seizures, paralysis, vision disturbances, or cognitive issues.


Using mobile phones can cause brain tumours

Since the advent of widespread mobile phone use over 20 years ago, there has been persistent rumours about the link between brain tumours and mobile phone use. However, there is no convincing evidence that mobile phone use causes brain tumours, or any type of cancer.

Although high doses of electromagnetic waves can be dangerous for human health, the doses emitted by mobile phones are very weak and present no risk, according to Cancer Research UK.


Brain tumours are usually inoperable

Brain tumours can be serious and the treatment is subject to many variables, such as the size, type, and location of the tumour and the age and general health of the patient. However, there are now many advanced techniques of treating brian tumours. Neurosurgery is possible to successfully a brain tumour in some cases.

In other cases, the tumour may be treated with radiosurgery. One of the most advanced methods is known as stereotactic radiotherapy, or sometimes called Gamma Knife surgery.

This involves using an external machine to target very precise and intense doses of gamma rays from multiple angles at the tumour to kill the cells, whilst leaving the surrounding healthy tissue intact.


Brain tumours will always cause severe headaches

Although severe and persistent headaches can be a symptom of a brain tumour, if this is the only symptom you are experiencing, there could be another cause. For example, it may be due to migraines or fatigue. Brain tumour symptoms vary depending on the size and location of the tumour, and sometimes they cause very few symptoms at all.


Brain tumours run in families

While certain genetics may be a risk factor for a brain tumour, it is believed to be quite rare. Research is still ongoing into the exact causes, but risk factors include age, obesity, and previous exposure to radiation.

In his latest online article, Mr Pedro Oliveira Castanho gives us his insights into meningioma. He talks about what meningioma is, the causes, how it’s detected, if it should be removed, treatment options, the benefits and side effects and the outlook.

What is meningioma, and what are the causes?

Meningioma is a tumour originating from the membranes enveloping the brain and spinal cord. Generally, they are non-cancerous growths, although occasional cases may exhibit more aggressive behaviour. Rarely, malignant forms can occur, particularly in individuals with specific genetic predispositions.

Determining a singular cause for meningiomas proves challenging, as they typically arise from a complex interplay of various factors rather than a singular origin. While hormonal influence, particularly in women, has been suggested, this connection remains incompletely understood. Recognised risk factors include exposure to radiation and the presence of certain genetic conditions like neurofibromatosis type 2, though these represent a minority of cases.

How are meningioma typically detected?

Brain scans may incidentally reveal meningiomas, even before they manifest any symptoms, often occurring during scans conducted for unrelated reasons such as falls or accidents. Patients with meningiomas may present with a range of symptoms, either individually or in combination. These symptoms encompass headaches, epileptic seizures, alterations in behaviour or memory, weakness and sensations in the arms or legs, facial drooping, and double or blurred vision, among others. The absence of specific symptoms for meningiomas highlights the variability, influenced by factors like location, size, and the extent of swelling within the brain.

When should meningiomas be removed?

If there are clear signs of significant symptoms, growth on consecutive scans, or indications of more aggressive behaviour, it may be necessary to consider surgical removal.

What treatment options are available for meningiomas?

Surgery to either remove or shrink the tumour is often advised for the mentioned tumours. Another option is the Gamma Knife, which might be the preferred treatment for certain patients, aiming to prevent tumour growth. In some cases, merely monitoring with regular imaging may be sufficient for managing meningiomas. Currently, there is no medication specifically designed to treat these tumours effectively. However, various medications can assist in symptom control, such as alleviating headaches, managing seizures, or reducing brain swelling. In certain situations, a combination of these treatments and other approaches may be necessary.

Can you explain the benefits and potential side effects of each treatment?

The term “Gamma Knife” might sound misleading because there’s no cutting involved. It’s a minimally invasive procedure where targeted gamma rays are used on the tumour, minimising impact on the surrounding brain. Despite the unusual idea of using radiation for tumours caused by it, the high dose is precisely aimed at the unhealthy tissue. Usually done in a day and as a single treatment, the procedure might take a few minutes to a few hours. Beforehand, you’ll be admitted for necessary investigations.

While generally well-tolerated, common symptoms on the day may include headaches, dizziness, and light-headedness, manageable with later medication. Temporary hair loss and transient brain swelling, also controllable with medication, are potential experiences for patients. Long-term side effects are rare, with exceedingly rare occurrences of radiation necrosis and radiation-induced tumours.

On the other hand, surgery has the potential to cure but is the most invasive option, requiring general anaesthesia. Operations usually go as planned with common post-operative effects like wound pain and swelling. However, there is a small risk of serious complications or death, and the severity of risks varies depending on the tumour’s complexity.

What is the outlook for meningiomas?

Meningiomas are complex tumours that usually need long-term monitoring, no matter how they’re treated. The good news is, with the right care, they’re often curable or manageable. In these cases, people should be able to lead a regular life and have a normal life expectancy.

Gamma Knife surgery - brain scan

Being diagnosed with a brain tumour can be a confusing and overwhelming time for both patients and families. There is a steep learning curve and you may be presented with a lot of unfamiliar medical terms. Here’s a glossary of some of the most commonly used terms to help you make sense of a brain tumour diagnosis and treatment.


The stage where brain tumour cells are dividing rapidly and bear little or no resemblance to normal cells in appearance or function.


An antibody is a protein made by white blood cells that attaches itself to an antigen and neutralises or destroys foreign cells such as viruses or cancer cells.


Antigen is a substance that is recognised by antibodies and induces an immune response.


Benign is usually used to describe a slow-growing tumour that stays in its primary location without spreading to other parts of the body, and they are usually non-cancerous.


A biopsy is a form of neurosurgery that is used to take a sample of cells or tissues for diagnostic purposes.

Blood-brain barrier

The blood-brain barrier is a protective membrane that surrounds the blood vessels within the brain to protect it from circulating blood that may contain toxins and damage brain tissues.


When cancer is treated with drugs to stop the growth of tumour cells, it is called chemotherapy. There are a very limited number of chemotherapy drugs available to treat brain tumours because they are not able to cross the blood-brain barrier.

Gamma Knife surgery

Despite its name, Gamma Knife surgery is not a traditional surgery that involves incisions into the brain. It is a type of stereotactic radiosurgery that is used to deliver precisely focused radiation beams directed to the treatment area in the brain. This deliberately damages the targeted cells, whilst having minimal impact on the surrounding tissues.

High grade tumour

A high-grade tumour is a grade 3 or 4 tumour that is likely to grow and spread quickly to nearby tissue. Depending on the size and location of the tumour, they can be difficult to treat.

The grades are made on the basis of a biopsy specimen that is analysed by a pathologist.

Low grade tumour

A low-grade tumour is a grade 1 or 2 tumour that grows slowly. A grade 1 tumour is unlikely to spread to nearby tissues. A grade 2 tumour may spread and has the potential to regrow even if it is surgically removed.

Metastatic brain tumour

A metastatic brain tumour is a secondary brain tumour that began elsewhere in the body and spread to the brain.


An oncologist is a doctor who specialises in the diagnosis and treatment of cancer. Oncologists who specialise in the treatment of brain tumours are referred to as neuro-oncologists.


Radiotherapy is the use of radiation to manage or kill brain tumour cells. It can be used in combination with other treatments such as chemotherapy and surgery.

gamma knife surgery - Image of DNA strand

The mystery of why some diseases such as multiple sclerosis (MS) are more prevalent in some parts of Europe is closer to being understood after a recent study by an international team of researchers. BBC News reports that the new information could shed new light on what causes MS and impact on the way that it is treated.

MS is a neurological condition that affects the central nervous system. It occurs when the immune system mistakenly attacks the protective insulating layer of nerve fibres, disrupting the messages between the brain and the body.

This causes a range of symptoms such as stiffness, spasms, tremors, numbness, fatigue, loss of balance, vision problems, pain, bladder and bowel problems, and problems with memory and concentration. The symptoms vary in type and severity from person to person, and can recur and relapse, or get progressively worse over time.

It’s estimated that about 130,000 people in the UK are living with MS, and globally the number is thought to be around 2.5 million people. The distribution of cases around the world is uneven, with very low rates in countries that lie south of the equator, and particularly high rates for countries in the northern hemisphere such as Canada and Scotland.

The new research carried out by scientists from the universities of Cambridge, Oxford, and Copenhagen may shed light on the reason for this uneven distribution. They studied the teeth and bones of our about 5,000 ancient ancestors who entered north western Europe around 34,000 years ago.

These ancient people were cattle herders known as Yamnaya and they came from western Russia and bordering eastern European nations. Scientists have discovered that these people had gene variants that protected them from animal diseases.

However, in the modern era these genes can put us at a disadvantage, making people more vulnerable to developing certain neurological diseases, including MS and Alzheimer’s disease. So far, very little is understood about the exact causes of these diseases and why some people are more prone to them than others.

The experts sequenced the ancient human DNA and mapped the historical spread of the genes in migration patterns over time. The ancient DNA was compared to modern-day samples to shed light on the differences.

Professor Fugger, co-author of the paper published in the journal Nature said: “MS is not caused by mutations – it’s driven by normal genes to protect us against pathogens.”

MS is currently treated by suppressing the body’s immune system, but this can leave the patient vulnerable to infections. Prof Fugger explained: “When treating it, we are up against evolutionary forces. We need to find the sweet spot where there is a balance with the immune system, rather than wiping it out.”

Prof Fugger added: “This means we can now understand and seek to treat MS for what it actually is: the result of a genetic adaptation to certain environmental conditions that occurred back in our prehistory.”

The researchers also found further clues as to why northern Europeans tend to be taller than their southern counterparts.


If you would like to find out more about Gamma Knife surgery and multiple sclerosis treatment, please contact Mr Jonathan Hyam of Amethyst Radiotherapy.

Gamma Knife surgery - doctor performing surgery

The American singer Michael Bolton has revealed that he is taking time out to recover from surgery to remove a brain tumour. BBC News reports that the 70-year old performer was diagnosed with the tumour late last year, and immediately underwent surgery. He is now recovering at home.

Bolton was in the middle of a tour of the US and Europe, and has cancelled an upcoming date in Florida, plus all subsequent performances until the end of the year. He is best known for his early 1990s pop-rock songs such as Steel Bars; a cover of Percy Sledge’s song When a Man Loves a Woman; and How Am I Supposed to Live Without You.

The singer has won two Grammy Awards and sold over 65 million records worldwide. He has also acted in TV shows including Glee, The Nanny and Awkwafina is Nora from Queens, and took part in the US version of the celebrity talent show The Masked Singer.

In a statement on Instagram, he said: “I am now recuperating at home and surrounded by the tremendous love and support of my family. For the next couple months, I will be devoting my time and energy to my recovery which means I’ll have to take a temporary break from touring.”

He added: “It is always the hardest thing for me to ever disappoint my fans or postpone a show, but have no doubt I am working hard to accelerate my recovery and get back to performing soon.”

“Thanks to my incredible medical team, the surgery was a success. I am now recuperating at home and surrounded by the tremendous love and support of my family.”


What are the warning signs of a brain tumour?

A common symptom of a brain tumour is headaches, which is caused by increased pressure inside the skull. However, according to Cancer Research UK, headaches are likely to be accompanied by other symptoms, including feeling or being sick, eyesight disturbances such as flashing lights or blind spots, or fits or drowsiness.

Severe headaches that wake you up in the night, or get persistently worse over time, should be investigated by a doctor. Brain tumours may also cause problems with cognitive function or personality changes. The symptoms often depend on the location of the tumour in the brain.

The main areas of the brain are known as the cerebrum and the cerebellum. The cerebrum takes up the major part of the skull, while the cerebellum sits at the back of the head, above the top of the spinal cord.

The cerebrum is divided into four areas, known as lobes; the frontal lobe, the parietal lobe, the temporal lobe, and the occipital lobe. Each lobe controls different functions of the brain and body, and a tumour can disturb the nerve signals, which is why the location of the tumour is relevant to the type of symptoms the patient experiences.


For information about Gamma Knife surgery and Brain cancer, please contact Mr Neil Kitchen of Amethyst Radiotherapy.

gamma knife - Medical professionals examining magnetic resonance imaging scans

The comedian Miles Jupp has discussed his recovery from a brain tumour, as he prepares to take to the stage again in January. Jupp is well loved for his comedy performances and also his acting roles in the CBeebies show Balamory, the Harry Potter films, The Thick of It, and Rev.

Jupp is appearing in the upcoming Ridley Scott film about the life of Napoleon, The Emperor of Austria, and is also about to embark on an extensive stand up tour of the UK between January and May.  He uses some of his recent experiences in the medical sector as inspiration for his comedy material.

In 2021, Jupp was diagnosed with a benign brain tumour after having a seizure. He subsequently underwent surgery to remove a tumour the size of a cherry tomato.

Although benign tumours are non-cancerous and unlikely to spread, they can press on important nerves in the brain and cause serious side effects such as seizures, vision disturbances, fatigue, loss of coordination, memory problems, and muscle weakness.

Jupp said of using his experience as stand up material: “I found being in hospital very uplifting, partly because you’re just surrounded by people who are very caring. It’s not me moaning about unsatisfactory customer experience. Hopefully it’s pure storytelling with a beginning, a middle and an end.”

Jupp has since made a good recovery from the neurosurgery, which is the main treatment for non-cancerous brain tumours. If it is not possible to remove the entire tumour, further treatment involving chemotherapy or radiotherapy may be undertaken.

Radiosurgery involves targeting the tumour with highly controlled doses of high-energy radiation to kill the tumour cells. It causes minimum damage to the surrounding cells, and avoids the need for invasive traditional surgery that involves cutting into the skull.

There are different types of radiotherapy machines, which generally either deliver standard external beam radiotherapy or stereotactic radiotherapy (SRT). The latter is used to deliver highly targeted beams that may be of a higher dose, which means that the treatment can be carried out in fewer sessions.

Some radiotherapy machines, such as Gamma Knife, are designed specifically to deliver SRT treatment.

Jupp discussed his experience further in an interview with Virgin Radio: “It’s terrifying. I sort of wrote it down after a while because, when I was first getting better, I was struggling to put things in order. At one point, I’d have to think for ages to remember the word ‘tumour’, which was, at that point, quite central to my life. So I thought I better start writing it down.”

Miles continued: “Every aspect of normal life when you go back, it scares you to do something for the first time. There was a period where I was doing things for the first time since the operation and thinking, ‘Will I still be able to do this particular thing? Will I still be able to ride a bike?'”

Jupp has fortunately recovered well and has used the experience as the basis of his new stand up routine.

For more information about brain tumour treatment, please contact Mr Andrew McAvoy of Amethyst Radiotherapy.