Spine and Sacral Tumor Center

Spinal Cord Tumor Program

To learn more about the Spinal Cord Tumor Program at the Brain and Spine Tumor Center, expand a section below. 

What Are Spinal Cord Tumors?

Spinal cord tumors are uncommon tumors that grow within the substance of the spinal cord (intramedullary) or just outside of it (extramedullary). Due to the rare nature of these tumors, effective and safe treatment is best achieved by working with physicians with extensive experience in their treatment.

At the spinal cord tumor program at Rhode Island Hospital, our team of neurosurgeons, plastic surgeons, oncologists, and radiation oncologists work together to ensure patients receive personalized specialty care and an optimal treatment outcome. We utilize modern technology to enhance patient surgical outcomes including intraoperative computed tomography, frameless stereotactic navigation, and neurophysiology monitoring.

Tumors treated include:

  • Intramedullary: astrocytoma, ependymoma, metastasis, hemangioblastoma, cavernoma
  • Extramedullary: meningioma, schwannoma, neurofibroma, ependymoma.

Treatment Options

Treatment of spinal cord tumors requires technical expertise and a multidisciplinary approach. In many cases surgery is the first-line treatment option for these tumors. Radiation and chemotherapy are often reserved for residual or recurrent tumors or tumors that are surgically inaccessible.

Treatment Team

All neurosurgeons at our center are fellowship trained in complex spine surgery and have expertise in treating these tumors. Our spinal cord tumor surgical group includes Adetokunbo Oyelese, MD; Jared Fridley, MD; and Ziya Gokaslan, MD, chief of neurosurgery at Rhode Island Hospital and The Miriam Hospital.

Sacral Tumor Program

To learn more about the Sacral Tumor Program at the Brain and Spine Tumor Center, expand a section below. 

What Are Sacral Tumors?

Sacral tumors are rare tumors of the spine that require specialty expertise in their treatment. There are many different types of sacral tumors. They can broadly be classified as either a primary bone tumor or a metastasis. Treatment depends on the tumor type. The sacral tumor program at Rhode Island Hospital combines extensive experience and technical expertise in the multidisciplinary treatment of these uncommon tumors. Our center is led by Ziya Gokaslan, MD, chief of neurosurgery at Rhode Island Hospital and The Miriam Hospital and chairman of the department of neurosurgery at The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University, and a world-renowned neurosurgeon with unique expertise in sacral tumor treatment.

Treatment Options

Surgery is often the first-line treatment option in patients with sacral tumors. We utilize advanced intraoperative technology to ensure maximal tumor resection and safe surgery. This includes intraoperative computed tomography and frameless stereotactic navigation to help with tumor resection. Chemotherapy and radiation are often used as adjuncts to surgery or in cases of residual or recurrent tumor.

Treatment Team

Our team of neurosurgeons, general surgeons, plastic surgeons, oncologists, and radiation oncologists work together to ensure patients receive personalized specialty care and an optimal treatment outcome. Our neurosurgery team includes Ziya Gokaslan, MD; Adetokunbo Oyelese, MD; and Jared Fridley, MD.

Learn more about the Brain and Spine Tumor center at Lifespan