Spinal Tumor Treatment Strategies

3D Spinal Illusion imageThe type of spinal tumor treatment a patient will receive depends on numerous factors. For example, patients diagnosed with an intramedullary tumor, which develops within the spinal cord itself, may benefit from a different treatment strategy than patients with an extramedullary tumor, which develops in the cells surrounding the spinal cord. Additionally, many other factors must be taken into account in the development of an appropriate treatment strategy, including a patient’s age and overall health. Some of the most common spinal tumor treatment strategies include:
  • Surgery, which involves excising as much of a spinal tumor as possible. Though new technology advancements allow surgeons to remove tumors that were once not accessible, surgery is still only performed when the risk of spinal cord damage is within acceptable limits.
  • Chemotherapy, which involves the use of powerful medications to destroy cancer cells and prevent tumor growth. There are many chemotherapeutic agents available, and the correct combination and dosage will depend on a patient’s unique condition.
  • Radiation therapy, which involves the use of radioactive beams or implants to destroy cancerous cells. Often, this treatment will be used to eliminate the pieces of a tumor that were too risky to remove during surgery.

At Tampa General Hospital, our goal is to eliminate spinal tumors while preserving neurological function, thereby improving the quality of life and prognoses of our patients. We accomplish this through a comprehensive, team approach that involves surgeons and medical and radiation oncologists who use leading-edge technologies to create and execute completely personalized treatment strategies.

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