Benjamin R. Cohen, M.D., F.A.C.S.
Spinal Surgeon & Neurosurgeon located in Garden City, NY
Spinal tumor treatment demands such a high degree of skill that your surgery should only be performed by a physician like Benjamin Cohen, MD, who has significant experience removing tumors while protecting your nerves. If you develop symptoms of a tumor, or you’ve been diagnosed and you need an expert neurosurgeon, call the office in Garden City, New York, or book an appointment online.
Spinal Tumor Treatment
What are the different types of spinal tumors?
Spinal tumors that develop within the spinal cord and spinal column are called primary tumors. There are three types of primary spinal tumors:
- Vertebral column tumors: Originate in the vertebral bones or discs
- Intramedullary tumors: Develop inside the spinal cord
- Intradural-extramedullary tumors: Grow within the spinal canal, under membranes covering the spinal cord but outside the nerves
Metastatic or secondary tumors occur when cancer from another part of your body spreads to your spine. Lung, breast, and prostate cancers commonly spread to your spine.
What symptoms might I develop from a spinal tumor?
The most common symptom of a spinal tumor is back pain that’s not caused by an injury or degenerative disease. Some patients find that the pain caused by a spinal tumor spreads to their hips, legs, or arms.
As the tumor grows, you’ll experience additional symptoms such as:
- Loss of sensation in your arms, legs, or chest
- Muscle weakness in your arms or legs
- Diminished sensitivity to pain, heat, and cold
- Loss of bowel or bladder function
Some patients with spinal tumors develop paralysis and have a hard time walking.
How are spinal tumors treated?
Dr. Cohen carefully evaluates the type of tumor, assesses its expected growth rate, and talks with you about the severity of your symptoms before making a treatment recommendation. Both malignant and benign spinal tumors may require surgery.
Even when a tumor is not cancerous, it can grow large enough to press on spinal nerves and cause symptoms. When the tumor can’t be completely removed, your surgery may be preceded or followed by chemotherapy or radiation.
Spinal tumor surgery is a complex procedure that includes the delicate task of removing as much of the tumor as possible while preserving neurological function. In addition to surgical tumor removal, Dr. Cohen may recommend other types of surgery to treat your symptoms.
Decompressing the spine to relieve pressure on the nerve roots can eliminate or control the pain caused by spinal tumors. Spinal decompression can also help to preserve nerve function. After decompression surgery, Dr. Cohen may perform a spinal fusion to strengthen and stabilize your spine.
If you develop back pain that’s not associated with an injury or degenerative disease, call Benjamin Cohen, MD, or book an appointment online.