Steps in evaluating brain tumors
Identify images (CT, MR): Evaluate all MR sequences.
Locate the lesion: Intra-axial vs. extra-axial.
MR signal: Evaluate T1 and T2 wtd. signals to characterize cyst, calcification, blood, fat, etc.
Enhancement: Look at pre-contrast T1 and post-contrast T1 images as a pair. Most tumors enhance with contrast because blood brain barrier is broken. It is the character of enhancement that is helpful.
Age of the patient: First decade vs. adult.
Differential diagnosis: Common lesions
Anatomical sites of tumor
Intra-axial: Metastasis, Astrocytoma
Skull base/extra-axial tumors:
Children and young adults: