Brain Cancer Surgery

Neurosurgery is usually the first step in treating an accessible brain tumor. The amount of tumor the neurosurgeon can safely remove depends on its location in the brain and the expertise of the neurosurgeon.  Tumors are removed to the maximum extent possible.

Neurosurgeons at The Ben & Catherine Ivy Center for Advanced Brain Tumor Treatment are highly skilled. In fact, we have been able to remove tumors from about 85 percent of the patients who come to us – many of whom have been designated as "inoperable" by other facilities.

During brain cancer surgery, surgeons open the skull to get direct access to the brain. This is called a craniotomy. Our neurosurgeons are aided by precision tools including:

  • Interoperative MRI, which provides a real-time evaluation of each surgery, showing how much of the tumor material has been removed
  • Computer-guided navigation equipment that gives a three-dimensional map of the brain as the operation progresses
  • Intraoperative nerve monitoring tests to determine the role of specific nerves and to monitor brain activity as the surgery progresses

A tumor that is not accessible via a craniotomy is often treated by Gamma Knife or CyberKnife. While these terms sound like surgery, they are actually highly sophisticated forms of radiation treatment.

In the video below, our founding director, Dr. Greg Foltz, describes the routine and frequency of brain surgery. Computer brain mapping produces a three-dimensional image of a patient's brain. Once inside, physical mapping occurs. A precise ultrasound device is used to remove a brain tumor.