Noninvasive Treatment for Brain and Spine Tumors

Stereotactic Radiosurgery (SRS)

Penn Highlands Healthcare is the first in the local area to offer stereotactic radiosurgery to treat patients with brain tumors and spine tumors fitting specific criteria. Using the Penn Highlands TrueBeamâ„¢ Linear Accelerator, our expert neurosurgeons and radiation oncologists can treat most tumors in one outpatient setting.

Stereotactic radiosurgery, sometimes called gamma knife surgery or cyberknife treatment, is a superb non-surgical treatment for brain tumors and spine tumors for patients meeting the criteria. If you qualify for stereotactic radiosurgery, you will enjoy the benefits of a noninvasive, quick treatment that is performed as an outpatient and can have you back at work within days.

What is Stereotactic Radiosurgery?

Stereotactic radiosurgery is a highly specialized and extremely precise technique. It involves delivering very high doses of radiation directly to tumors while minimizing the effects on surrounding healthy tissue. Because of the strength of the doses, it’s very likely to effectively control your tumor. And since the surrounding healthy tissue receives a much lower radiation dose, the risk of side effects is low. In addition to being used to treat brain tumors and spinal tumors, stereotactic radiosurgery can be used to shrink the tumor so that it can more easily be removed through traditional surgery.

Do I Qualify for Stereotactic Radiosurgery for a Brain Tumor?

Any patient with a brain tumor or spinal tumor should speak to their physician about the option of stereotactic radiosurgery or set up a consultation with a Penn Highlands neurosurgeon or radiation oncologist. Stereotactic radiosurgery can be used for both benign tumors (non-cancerous tumors) and malignant tumors (cancer tumors). In general, stereotactic radiosurgery is best suited to patients with brain tumors who:

  • Have tumors that are 3 to 4 centimeters or smaller
  • Have tumors that are considered unreachable, inoperable, or too high risk for open surgery
  • Have three or fewer small metastatic brain tumors
  • Cannot undergo general anesthesia because of age or overall health conditions
  • Prefer a minimally invasive approach

Do I Qualify for Stereotactic Radiosurgery for a Spine Tumor?

Stereotactic radiosurgery can be used for both benign tumors (non-cancerous tumors) and malignant tumors (cancer tumors). In general, stereotactic radiosurgery is best suited to a spine tumor patient with spine tumors that fit one or more of these criteria:

  • Small spine tumors or tangles of blood vessels on the spinal cord or surrounding areas
  • Spine tumor that cannot be reached through standard surgery
  • Part of a tumor or arteriovenous malformation (AVM) remaining after surgery
  • Heart condition or other health condition that prevents the patient from having standard surgery

If you would like to learn more, call Penn Highlands at 814-503-4433 or Hahne Regional Cancer Center at 814-375-3535.

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Conditions We Treat