Brain, spinal and nerve tumors

Tumors in the brain or spinal cord are masses of abnormal cells that have grown out of control. Brain and spinal cord tumors can be cancerous (malignant) or noncancerous (benign). In the brain, even benign tumors can be dangerous because they press on normal brain tissue and can cause permanent damage.

People with brain and spinal cord tumors need specialized care to remove the tumors and to make sure they don’t come back.

What you should know about brain, spinal and nerve tumors

  • Brain, spinal and nerve tumors require care from a team of doctors representing different specialty areas:
    • Neurosurgeon: A docotor specializing in brain surgery
    • Neurologist: A doctor who diagnoses and treats brain and nervous system diseases
    • Radiation oncologist: A doctor who uses radiation to treat cancer
    • Medical oncologist: A doctor who uses chemotherapy and other medicine to treat cancer
    • Endocrinologist: A doctor who treats diseases in the glands that secrete hormones 
  • Treatment for brain, spinal and nerve tumors may include surgery, radiation, chemotherapy or other drugs, and targeted therapy.

Why choose Geisinger for brain, spinal and nerve tumor treatment?

  • Geisinger's Brain & Spine Tumor Institute is at the forefront of diagnosing and treating the most complex brain, spinal and nerve tumors and offers one of the most comprehensive treatment programs in the country.
  • We utilize the Gamma Knife® Icon, which is an advanced, noninvasive treatment method that uses extremely precise radiation beams to pinpoint tumor deposits, leaving the surrounding healthy tissue unharmed.
    • This treatment can effectively help with a wide variety of disorders, including brain tumors, epilepsy and other abnormalities that can cause chronic pain.
    • Many patients undergo treatment in a single session, without needing to stay overnight in the hospital.  
  • We provide personalized and highly specialized care through a team approach that includes our programs in neuro-oncology, brain tumor research and neurosurgical oncology.
  • Our Brain & Spine Tumor Institute offers access to:
    • Neurosurgical oncologists who have completed advanced training (fellowships) in their specialty
    • State-of-the-art diagnostic and surgical technology, including minimally invasive and computer-guided tools
    • Stereotactic radiation surgery
    • Advanced clinical trials

Treatment options

The specialists at Geisinger’s Brain & Spine Tumor Institute offer advanced treatment options for brain, spinal and nerve tumors, including:

  • Surgery
  • Gamma Knife®
  • Chemotherapy : Strong drugs destroy cancer cells, prevent them from spreading or slow their growth.
  • Clinical trials : Our research gives you access to new treatments, such as special cancer-fighting drugs.
  • Stereotactic radiation surgery

Specialties and institutes

Connect with other specialties at Geisinger to learn more about these treatments.

  • Brain and Spine Tumor Institute
  • Cancer

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