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Glioma Diagnosis, Identification, and Treatment

Group of doctorsA glioma is a type of primary brain tumor that is named for the fact that it begins in the glial cells. Most primary brain tumors - tumors originating in the brain rather than spreading from cancer in another part of the body - are gliomas, especially those that are malignant, or cancerous. Brain tumors, including gliomas, are graded on a scale of one to four, with one being the most benign and four being the most cancerous. As a malignant tumor, a glioma can cause any of the symptoms of brain cancer, which often include memory problems, unusual seizures or headaches, difficulty with balance, and trouble speaking, hearing, or seeing. There are several different types of malignant gliomas, classified by the types of cells they arise from. These varieties of glioma include:

  • Astrocytoma – Derived from astrocytes; may be Grade 1, 2, 3, or 4
  • Oligodendroglioma – Derived from the cells that create the fatty substance that covers and protects nerves; may be Grade 2 or 3
  • Ependymoma – Derived from the cells lining the ventricles or the spinal cord’s central canal; may be Grade 1, 2, or 3
  • Brain stem glioma – Derived from the cells of the spinal cord tissue and appear in the brain stem itself; may be Grade 1, 2, 3, or 4

Patients who have a glioma or other form of brain cancer may seek diagnosis and treatment from Tampa General Hospital’s Neuro-Oncology Program. All of the surgeons in the program are highly skilled and fellowship trained, and they are leaders in the field of skull base surgery, a form of neurosurgical intervention used to treat a variety of brain, spinal, and peripheral nerve conditions, including brain cancer. Our surgeons work closely with medical and radiation oncology colleagues to develop individualized treatment plans for each patient’s specific needs, including glioma primary brain tumors treatment.

For a physician referral, please call (813) 844-2200.