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 In Charity News

Helping you and your family cope with behaviour and personality change as a result of your brain tumour

At brainstrust, we think behaviour and personality change (BPC) is up there with fatigue when it comes to challenge. Its one of those topics for which is there is no silver bullet, no magic pill. It makes everyone feel disempowered, unable to help, and daunted.

We know that up 60% of people diagnosed with a brain tumour experience BPC, and we know too that there is little support for this. We’re working on this too – you can find more about our BPC workshops here. 

What causes BPC?

Sometimes BPC is due to the tumour itself. Brain tumours can cause a variety of symptoms. These can be neurological symptoms (headaches, dizziness, loss of speech or movement) or behavioural changes (changes in the way people act). Changes in behaviour, personality and cognition could be related to the type of tumour, its location, size and rate of growth or grade. Treatments can also cause BPC. Radiation therapy, surgery, medication, chemotherapy – all of these can have an impact.

 

The latest brainstrust resource to help you live better with a brain tumour

This is why we have produced our latest resource – to help you cope with BPC. It’s been a long time coming, but it is important that we get this right. We want to help everyone in our community cope with BPC, whether they are a person living with a brain tumour, a clinician or a member of the public.

When illness strikes, a number of structural and emotional skews will follow. Our belief systems are challenged, our roles upended, and identities shift. The onset of a brain tumour diagnosis forcefully challenges the emotional and physical boundaries that we have spent a lifetime building.

The tumour is an uninvited guest that we must somehow build into our lives while at the same time living with the undercurrent of threatened loss. This loss and distress is not a cause of BPC, but it is a factor that comes into play.

We’ve created this new resource with leading neuropsychologists, covering:

  • Understanding behaviour and personality change (BPC)
  • What we mean by BPC
  • Causes of BPC
  • What is different about BPC when living with a brain tumour?
  • How is BPC manifested?
  • How do we measure BPC?
  • Mood journals
  • What are the strategies to help me cope?
  • Treatment options

Self-help strategies:

  • Looking after someone with BPC
  • Who can help?
  • Questions to ask
  • What to do in a crisis.

Visit the behaviour and personality change section of our website for more information – or click here to download your copy of the resource.

We want to hear from you. We want to know more about your experiences of living with BPC, the strategies you have developed to cope with it, or not, and who is in your team that has helped you with this. Sharing your story will help us to make sure our support is as relevant and effective as possible, and will help others to know that they are not alone.

If you want to share your story and wish to remain anonymous then please email helen@brainstrust.org.uk.