Spinal Tumors

Spine Tumor SurgeryThe Neurospinal Disorders Program offers treatment for all primary and metastatic tumors. We treat a high volume of spinal tumor cases each year and our spine surgeons are continually at the forefront of developing new techniques for optimum resection of the most difficult tumors. Our faculty who specialize in spinal tumors are members of the Spine Oncology Study Group - an international collaboration of spine tumor experts who partner in studying the behavioral patterns of these tumors and analyzing the efficacy of current therapies.

Our surgical team has special expertise in transpedicular corpectomy and en bloc resection, sparing many cancer patients from a thoracotomy procedure and resulting in less morbidity and shorter hospital stays.

All spinal tumor cases are routinely reviewed at a multidisciplinary spine tumor board to determine the best treatment options for each patient. The close collaboration between neurosurgeons, orthopaedic surgeons, radiation oncologists, and oncolgoists at the UCSF Helen Diller Comprehensive Cancer Center gives our patients the benefit of care from a variety of specialists.

The Neurospinal Disorders Program uses the latest CyberKnife VSI radiosurgery platform for the treatment of spinal tumors. This non-invasive, painless treatment can be done in one to five sessions and can be used to treat primary and metastic tumors. The CyberKnife can also be used to treat patients who have inoperable spinal tumors or who have previously received radiation.

Surgical techniques for removal of malignant spine tumors:

• Spondylectomy (en bloc resection) for primary and metastatic tumors, including sacral tumors
• Transpedicular corpectomy for metastatic tumors
• Cervical transpedicular technique for ventral intradural tumors
• Lateral transpedicular approach to deep midline tumors of the cervical spine
• Image-guided tumor resection using advanced neuronavigation software