Celebrities Who Have Survived Brain Tumors.

Although the chances of developing a brain tumor seem very slim, they are more common than you think and a handful of celebs have overcome this scary experience. Here’s a list of a few celebrities that have had brain surgery to remove a tumor, and persevered. 

Just like any other person, celebrities deal with health scares and have to drop everything to take care of themselves. These celebs demonstrate the importance of taking control of your health and do a phenomenal job using their own scares to inspire others. Here are some celebs who’ve been diagnosed with brain tumors and what their journey has taught them!

Maria Menounos

Maria’s brain tumor journey began when her mother was diagnosed with glioblastoma back in 2016. Following this diagnosis, Maria was experiencing similar concerning symptoms and it turned out she also had a brain tumor, however, hers was thankfully benign. Even though hers was not cancerous like her mother, Menounos still had to undergo brain surgery and work on overcoming this obstacle. Her story is incredibly moving as she took an unfortunate situation and used it to inspire others to take better care of themselves by making health a priority through her Better Together podcast. She uses her platform in the entertainment industry to promote the importance of self-care and share all the health advice she’s gathered from both her and her mother’s battle with brain tumors.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by MARIA MENOUNOS (@mariamenounos)

Kate Walsh

Although this Grey’s Anatomy star didn’t diagnose herself, she is another celeb that found out she had a brain tumor which was a life-changing experience for her. Back in 2015, Walsh was experiencing symptoms of exhaustion, struggling to finish sentences, and even drifting when driving. This led her to get an MRI that revealed she had a lemon-sized tumor called meningioma. Just three days after receiving this news, Walsh was in surgery getting the tumor removed. After her surgery, her outlook changed as she became more dedicated to encouraging people to get annual checkups and be more aware of their health. She even partnered up with Cigna for their TV Doctors campaign that specifically promotes how crucial it is to get a check-up at least once a year. Kate Walsh continues to be a successful actress, but since her surgery, she has directed some of her focus on helping others take control of their own health and become more aware.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Kate Walsh (@katewalsh)

Mark Ruffalo

While filming You Can Count On Me back in 2000, Ruffalo recalls having a dream where he had a brain tumor and this immediately freaked him out. Although he felt crazy for assuming the worst, he wanted to rule out that fear and get some scans done. Crazy enough, he got an MRI done that showed results of a golf-ball-sized tumor behind his left ear. Following his surgery to remove the tumor, Ruffalo suffered permanent hearing loss along with temporary facial paralysis. Despite this, Mark actually looks back at this experience as a positive one where it gave him a new outlook and made him realize what should be a priority in his life.

Sheryl Crow

Back in 2012, this singer-songwriter was diagnosed with a benign brain tumor when she suddenly started feeling symptoms. Her memory started to get worse as she began to forget lyrics on stage and just felt extremely exhausted. This scared the singer so she decided to get an MRI which showed that she had a meningioma. Luckily for Crow, her tumor did not require surgery to be done immediately so she continues to get scans and monitor the growth of the tumor yearly.

Embed from Getty Images

Tionne Watkins

This singer and actress has not had it easy when it comes to her health, but it sure has proven what great strength she has. She has battled sickle cell anemia since her childhood which has not been easy as doctors even predicted she would not live past 30. To their surprise, this amazing woman persevered through it all, even having a child along the way. While everything seemed to be going smoothly, Watkins was diagnosed with a benign brain tumor and because of her disease, surgery was incredibly risky for her. Luckily, she was able to find a neurosurgeon who was willing to operate, even with her condition and it was a huge success! After the surgery, Watkins felt incredibly lucky and loves sharing her story in hopes of potentially helping someone else!

These are some of the strongest people in Hollywood for enduring what they did and using their experience to encourage others to be more mindful of their health. Their positivity is contagious and they’re all such amazing advocates for prioritizing your needs in any situation!

About the Author

Sophia Leogrande

Sophia Leogrande is a student at Pennsylvania State University studying Film Production with a minor in Spanish.