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Brain Tumor Awareness Month Calls Attention to 9/11 Community’s Risk

May 20, 2021 | Michael Barasch

We recognize Brain Tumor Awareness Month in May, calling attention to the nearly 25,000 people who will be diagnosed with malignant tumors of the brain or spinal cord this year in the United States.

This number tragically includes many 9/11 first responders and survivors who were exposed to Ground Zero toxins in Lower Manhattan on 9/11 or during the 8 following months and have a higher risk of 68 different types of cancer and many respiratory illnesses.

Barasch & McGarry represents hundreds of members of the 9/11 community who have been diagnosed with a brain tumor.

If you were there, you are at risk.

According to the American Cancer Society, the risk factors for brain tumors include radiation exposure, family history, several genetic disorders, and exposure to Ground Zero toxins.

The symptoms of brain cancer include headache, nausea, vomiting, blurred vision, balance problems, personality or behavior changes, seizures, and drowsiness or even coma.

If you experience any of these symptoms, check with your primary health care provider to determine if diagnostic tests are needed.

Screening for brain cancer typically involves imaging tests such as a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan, a computed tomography (CT) scan, or a positron emission tomography (PET) scan.

Treatment for a brain tumor could be surgery to remove the cancer, chemotherapy, radiation, and targeted drug therapies. 

If you are diagnosed with brain cancer or any other 9/11-related cancers or respiratory illnesses, contact us to access resources through the World Trade Center Health Program and the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund. 

Visit or call 212-385-8000 today.

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