A spinal tumor may be a primary tumor, which means it develops initially in the spine, or it may be metastatic from a tumor spreading from another part of the body. Either way, a skilled neurosurgeon can perform surgery to remove the spinal tumor.
This is a very delicate operation because a severed or damaged spinal cord can result in paralysis. You will therefore want to partner with a neurosurgeon who has years of successful experience in performing spinal tumor surgery.
Let’s talk about what’s involved in removing a spinal tumor, and where you can go for a consultation with world-class neurosurgeons.
Why Spine Surgery Is Necessary for a Spinal Tumor
The goal of the surgery may be to remove the tumor in an effort to:
- Put your cancer into remission
- Restore function
- Reduce pain
- Prevent deformities or paralysis
Your doctor will want to make sure that you’re healthy enough for surgery, and there’s minimal risk of developing complications.
Spinal tumors are graded and staged unless the tumor is confined to the spinal cord, in which case it is assigned a grade but not a stage. The grade is the rating of a tumor’s or cancer’s complexity, whereas stage is the level of spreading to other parts of the body (or not).
Preparing for Spine Surgery
Before you undergo surgery, your surgeon may recommend that you temporarily stop taking certain prescription medications before the procedure. For example, if you take a blood thinner, your doctor will want you to stop taking it until after the procedure in order to minimize your risk of excessive bleeding during the surgery.
If you smoke, your doctor will advise you to quit smoking for a few weeks before your procedure. Smoking slows down the healing process.
Type of Surgery Provided
The type of spinal surgery you have to remove the tumor depends on the type of tumor, its size, and its location. For instance, the surgeon may recommend en block resection (a procedure to remove the tumor as one mass) if you have a low-grade malignant tumor-like chondrosarcoma.
Risks of Surgery
Spinal tumor removal has certain risks. Your neurosurgeon will discuss your specific risks based on the type of surgery you need to have done and your overall health before you undergo the procedure. Feel free to ask your surgeon any questions you have before and after the surgery.
You’ll need to stay in the hospital for a few days for monitoring. Once your surgeon is sure you’re recovering and that no complications have occurred, you will be released to go home or to a rehabilitation facility.
Ask your surgeon beforehand about whether you will be allowed to go home, or whether you will be brought to a rehab center. Because the spinal cord is part of the central nervous system (comprising the spinal cord and the brain), you may need professional therapy for a number of days at a specialized facility.
Neurosurgery in Lone Tree, CO
If you have a spine tumor, our neurosurgeons here at Front Range Spine and Neurosurgery know how to remove as much or all of the tumor while causing as little harm to your body and your overall functioning as much as possible.
If you have any questions or would like to schedule a consultation with one of our world-class neurosurgeons, contact our friendly staff today by calling us at (303) 790-1800 or by filling out our appointment request form online now. We look forward to being a key partner in your health.