Q. Having panic attack, anxiety, and fear of brain tumour for past six years. Please help.

Answered by
Dr. Hitesh Kumar
and medically reviewed by Dr.Nithila A
This is a premium question & answer published on May 04, 2019

Hello doctor,

I am a 27-year-old male. My weight is 255 lb, and I am a smoker. I suffer from panic attack, anxiety, and fear of cancer for six years. Right now I have been spending all my day reading about brain tumor because I think I have it since I have all the symptoms.

Two weeks ago I had a panic attack where I felt I could not breathe, and feeling fainting. After that day, my ears started hurting a little bit, and I started feeling lightheaded, which is very hard to explain. My head feels like I am drunk but it is not spinning. I have not slept for days.

I had this problem before when I had anxiety issues, and I went in urgent care, where they checked my ear and I did not have ear infection. The doctor said your neck muscle feels irritated and sore. He said it could be due to it or allergies. And he prescribed me nasal spray to use, but when I used that, I experience terrible headache with neck pain.

After two days, I had the feeling that I am about to pass out again, so I decided to go in the ER. I told the doctor I need MRI and may have a brain tumor, and she said I could not do MRI on you without doing a blood test, ECG, and some tests where she makes me walk in a straight line and, etc. My blood test and ECG came back 100 % good. My doctor said there is no need for an MRI. I doubt that how she knows I do not have brain cancer?

She gave me some pills for allergies, but I am not taking it because I think I have a brain tumor. I am a painter, and I paint houses, and I work 14 hours a day. I do not feel any tiredness just this feeling in my head is killing me. Do I have a brain tumor and am I going to die within a year? I do not have a loss of appetite or anything, and I am just really thinking that I have a brain tumor. What do you think my problem is?



Welcome to icliniq.com.

Possibly you are very anxious with thoughts of having a brain tumor. It may be part and parcel of your previous anxiety problem, which might have increased recently. I suggest you consultant a psychiatrist for anxiety issues. For relieving your current thoughts and anxiety, you can get an MRI brain. Otherwise, your thoughts will keep on making you restless.

The doctor might have said of not having a tumor because you do not have a different kind of symptom. Still, you can get MRI done, to relieve these thoughts. But for further management, you should meet a psychiatrist.

Investigations to be done:

T3, T4, TSH, serum vitamin B12.

Probable diagnosis:

Anxiety disorder.

Preventive measures:

Daily exercises in form of jogging and yoga.

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Thank you doctor,

So in your experience, you do not think this is is a brain tumor. In two days, I feel little better no headache and no brain fog. The family doctor said there is no need for an MRI. In ER they made me walk straight on the line, and they looked at my eyes and some other stuff. And they said you do not have a brain tumor. But how can they know I do not have a brain tumor when I have this feeling. I have not slept for days, but I still have energy, but my mind is so foggy.



Welcome back to icliniq.com.

No one can tell entirely based on clinical examination that there is no brain tumor. But your clinical history points more in favor of anxiety disorder, in which also patient can have similar symptoms like you having. Medical history and examination with medical tests all combined aide in making a diagnosis. And possible diagnosis are thought in a sequence of common ones to uncommon ones. To rule out a brain tumor, MRI will be needed. But if some other evident reason explains symptoms, then no one will keep on looking for other causes.

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