Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is the most common form of malignant (cancerous) brain tumor found in adults. It originates as an abnormal growth of cells within the brain or spinal cord, characterized by its rapid growth and the ability to infiltrate and damage healthy surrounding tissue. Glioblastoma develops from specialized cells known as astrocytes, which provide support to nerve cells. 

Common symptoms associated with glioblastoma include progressively worsening headaches, nausea, vomiting, blurred or double vision, and seizures. 

There is currently no cure for glioblastoma. Available treatments aim to slow down the cancer’s growth and alleviate the associated symptoms. 


Since GBM cancer cells spread quickly, symptoms can also appear suddenly. Common signs and symptoms of GBM include:   

  • Migraines 
  • Memory issues  
  • Shifts in personality or mood.  
  • Double or blurred vision  
  • Appetite loss  
  • Convulsions 
  • Weakness in the muscles or balance issues  
  • Sensational changes, numbness, or tingling  
  • Nausea and vomiting  
  • Speech issues  


Experts have yet to determine the reasons why certain individuals develop cancerous brain tumors, including GBM.

Risk factors  

Certain factors can elevate your risk of developing GBM: 

  • Gender: Men are at a slightly higher risk. 
  • Age: GBM is more prevalent among individuals aged 45 to 70, with an average diagnosis age of 64. 
  • Exposure to Chemicals: This includes contact with substances like pesticides, petroleum, synthetic rubber, and vinyl chloride. 
  • Genetic Predisposition: Individuals with genetic conditions that promote tumor formation, such as neurofibromatosis, LiFraumeni syndrome, and Turcot syndrome, are at increased risk.
  • Previous Head Radiation Therapy: Having undergone radiation therapy directed at the head area in the past can also be a contributing factor.