Can a brain tumor cause transient blindness and headache?

Q. I have transient blindness in my left eye, with a headache. Do I have a brain tumor?

Answered by
Dr. Aida Abaz Quka
and medically reviewed by Dr. Preetha J
This is a premium question & answer published on Oct 21, 2020

Hi doctor,

I am a 50-year-old male. I think I have a brain tumor. I am getting an MRA tomorrow. Will this confirm? Then what? I have occasional transient blindness in the left eye when bending over and standing back up for approximately 10 seconds to two minutes hurts a little to touch, with dull pain, and not sharp and throbby. I have never gotten headaches in my life. We walk 2 to 4 miles a day, my equilibrium sometimes pulls slightly left, new. I feel a general pressure around the left eye orbit to upper left jaw to head bump and no sign of Uveitis. Carotid US is clear, plaque score is zero, low BP, and healthy heart has been examined by a retina specialist who prescribed MRA. All possibilities he can see from the front are ruled out for the transient blindness, the optic nerve is fine, the eye is fine, and no pressure in the eye, but I feel pressure in my left eye, I think a tumor is pushing it from the back. Other symptoms, noticed a bump on my skull approximately 1 to 2 inches above the hairline on the left side, slightly painful to the touch, I have never had headaches in my life, and I am starting to have a steady one now right there. My equilibrium has pulled slightly left for a while now. I feel like something is in there pushing for the room. How rushed and worried should I be if this is a tumor? My brother, who is ten years older (60 years old), might have a brain tumor newly diagnosed. He has never been prone to headaches, but have become steady now. I have ankylosis spondylitis; I am on Humira, Celebrex, Fiber, Vitamins, Lipitor (cholesterol just checked are fine).



Welcome to

I would explain that the symptoms are not suggestive of a brain tumor. Vascular disease of the brain (blood vessels) could mimic this situation. For this reason, an MRA (magnetic resonance angiography test) has been prescribed. Another issue to consider would be sinus headaches or sinus X. For this reason, an x-ray of a house would help. I remain at your disposal for any further questions whenever you need it.

Kind regards.

Hello doctor,

Thank you doctor for your reply.

I uploaded my MRI, and MRA scans from today. Is it possible to have you look at them and advise? I do not see them here, but your system read both of the discs into your system, so I hope they are here. The pressure inside of my left front head has increased a little bit, pushing on the back of my eye, left eye orbit, left upper jawline, and left top skull, where there is a bump, sensitive to touch with a headache centered where the bump is (I did not injure it, this is new in the last few weeks, and the headache is brand new for the past 36 hours, dull light low level. Thanks.



Welcome back to

I carefully reviewed your MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) report (attachment removed to protect patient identity) and would explain that it seems to be fine. I do not find any knot at the top of your head on the MRI images. The blood vessels have normal blood flow and normal diameter, no brain aneurysm or vessel narrowing. No brain tumor or infection. No stroke and no sinus infection. The cervical spine is normal too. So, try to relax and do not worry about it. Nothing serious seems to be going on. The bump could be just soft tissue inflammation (maybe a subcutaneous pimple or local inflammation), which is so small that it cannot be seen in the MRI. I hope you will find this information helpful. I recommend checking vitamin D and vitamin B12 plasma levels, thyroid hormone levels, and complete blood count for anemia. The headache could be just a tension-type headache related to psychological stress and a little anxiety. If you have any other questions, please do not hesitate to ask me again.

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