When a patient is diagnosed with a brain tumor, whether cancerous or non-cancerous, our goal is to remove it while minimizing any effects on your quality of life. Our specialists collaborate to develop individualized treatment plans for every patient with a brain tumor.
Typically, we remove brain tumors using surgery or radiation. We may also use an innovative technique called an awake craniotomy, where the patient stays awake during surgery.
Brain Tumor Care: Why Choose Memorial Healthcare System?
At our facilities, you will find:
- Expertise: Our neurosurgery team is often among the first to implement the newest technologies and treatment options for brain tumors, such as the awake craniotomy. We participate in leading-edge research, which means our specialists bring a high level of academic expertise not usually found in a community hospital.
- Comprehensive services: You have access to our full spectrum of services, including neurosurgery, oncology, neurocritical care and neurorehabilitation. This means that after your neurosurgery, you won’t have to go anywhere else for your rehabilitation and follow-up care.
- Timely treatment: We offer same-day appointments for new brain tumor diagnoses. Learning that you have a brain tumor can be alarming. We do our best to help put your mind at ease. We’ll start you on a treatment plan right away, whether that includes radiation or neurosurgery.
- A focus on you: During your first visit to one of our facilities, we give you are a clear point-of-contact. Treating a brain tumor can bring up a lot of questions. This person is available to support you and your family from your initial diagnosis all the way through recovery.
Collaboration on brain tumor treatment
Data shows that patients whose treatment involves a variety of specialists experience better outcomes. That’s why we conduct a monthly meeting called a tumor board to discuss all our patients who have brain tumors.
During this meeting, a team of highly skilled specialists determine the best treatment plan for each of our patients. This multidisciplinary tumor board includes:
- Neurosurgeons: Specialists who treat injuries or diseases of the brain, spine or related nerves.
- Oncologists: Specialists who treat cancer and provides medical care for a person diagnosed with cancer.
- Pathologists: Specialists who diagnosis and manage human disease.
- Radiation oncologists: Specialists who use radiation therapy to shrink cancerous tumors.
Brain Tumors Overview
Datasource: Kyle's brain tumor story
Brain tumors are abnormal growths of cells within the brain or skull. If they start in the brain, they are called primary tumors. If they grow when cancer from somewhere else in the body, such as the breast or lung, moves to the brain, then they are called metastatic tumors.
Even if a brain tumor is not cancerous, it can press on surrounding tissue and cause issues, such as trouble speaking, remembering or moving. Especially if the tumor is in a part of the brain that’s responsible for movement or speech, it’s important to remove it.
Doctors don’t know exactly what causes a primary brain tumor. Sometimes the growths, especially when they’re small, don’t cause noticeable symptoms. As brain tumors get bigger, some people can experience:
- Headaches, especially ones that are worse after waking up
- Dizziness and balance difficulties
- Nausea or vomiting
- Speech or memory problems
- Sudden seizures
Brain Tumor Care: What to Expect
Brain tumor surgery can be done with a minimally invasive approach depending on the tumor and location.
Patients experience significant benefits from minimally invasive surgery, including:
- Smaller incisions
- Less blood loss
- Faster recovery
- Reduced pain
If a tumor is particularly close to a part of the brain responsible for an important function, your physician may recommend an awake craniotomy. During this procedure, our team of neurologists and neurosurgeons use a process called motor and language mapping.
Before they remove the tumor, they test the area of the brain near it for critical movement or speech abilities. This might involve electrically stimulating specific areas of the brain while asking the patient to perform certain activities, such as speaking, reading, counting or moving their arms.
This process ensures that your surgeon can remove as much of the tumor as possible without damaging any vital speech or motor functions.
Call us today to schedule a new appointment or follow-up visit at 954-265-1490.