If you’ve been diagnosed with cancer or tumor of the brain or spine, you may feel overwhelmed and anxious about the next steps. At Allegheny Health Network (AHN), you are in skilled and compassionate hands. We give you the support and expertise you need, from diagnosis through treatment and recovery. Our goal is to fight the cancer while giving you the best chance at living a healthy, active life.
Cancer experts at AHN Neuroscience Institute and AHN Cancer Institute work together to prevent, detect, and beat cancer with exceptional success. You have access to innovative treatments and a personalized care plan that prioritizes your circumstances and values. And you are under the care of a highly skilled team of physicians and cancer specialists who exemplify expert, empathetic care.
Neuro-oncology care at AHN: Why choose us?
Patients choose AHN for neuro-oncology care because of our:
- Expertise: Our board-certified physicians receive a high level of specialized training in diagnosing and treating rare spine and brain tumors.
- Innovative cancer treatments: AHN’s neuro-oncology program is one of the most innovative oncology programs in the United States. We use the latest minimally invasive and robotic techniques to perform complex surgeries. AHN was the first center in the region to use OsteoCool™, a new minimally invasive, outpatient procedure to treat cancer that has spread to the spine. Learn more about minimally invasive neurosurgery.
- Convenience: AHN’s vast cancer care network allows you to access exceptional cancer care, close to home – at any of our seven hospitals and more than 50 Cancer Institute centers, located throughout western Pennsylvania. We also offer cancer care services in Erie, West Virginia, and Ohio.
- Coordinated care: We have the resources to provide the care you need within our network. From diagnosis through treatment and recovery, we help you get the most effective treatment all in one place, so you don’t need to go anywhere else. Learn more about our approach.
- Team approach: Our team of AHN oncology experts includes neurosurgeons, radiation oncologists, medical oncologists, and other health professionals. They pool their expertise and work with you to determine the most effective approach for cancer treatment. The goal is to find a care plan that offers the best chance for a positive outcome and long-term health.
- Focus on neuroscience research: Research is a cornerstone of our program, providing you with the latest and most effective therapies to treat spine and brain tumors. Through our work with Johns Hopkins Medicine and National Cancer Institute clinical trials, we pursue even more promising cancer treatments.
Brain and spinal cord tumors we treat
When cancer cells grow uncontrollably in the brain or spine, it causes a tumor. Our cancer care experts treat a wide range of brain and spinal cord tumors, including:
- Anaplastic astrocytoma
- Brain metastasis from lung, prostate, and other cancers
- Central nervous system tumors
- Glioblastoma multiforme
- Primary brain tumors
- Spinal cord tumors
- Skull base tumors
Get expert neuro-oncology treatment at AHN
Our neuro-oncology team brings together experts with different skills, so you get a comprehensive level of care. After a thorough evaluation, we work together to develop a cancer treatment plan that’s effective for your circumstances.
Our care team considers multiple factors, such as your age, overall health, and the specifics of the tumor, when determining which treatments will benefit you. Our physicians may recommend more than one treatment, or treatments in a specific order, to increase their effectiveness.
Your treatment plan may include:
- Radiation therapy: With advanced computer software and imaging technology, our radiation oncologists administer high-dose radiation beams directly to a tumor, while protecting surrounding healthy tissue. We have the country’s largest – and western Pennsylvania’s only – radiation oncology network, accredited by top radiation accrediting organizations.
- Chemotherapy: Chemotherapy uses medicines to kill cancer cells through an IV or port (a catheter that delivers medicine under the skin). We offer a range of advanced chemotherapies.
- Surgery: Our neurosurgeons remove tumor tissue without damaging surrounding healthy neural tissue. This approach helps surgeons remove more of the cancer while resulting in a shorter hospital stay and recovery for patients. We use minimally invasive techniques such as OsteoCool as well as innovative robotics technology to perform safe, effective surgeries. Learn more about our minimally invasive approach to spine and back surgery and brain surgery.
Our neuro-oncology team offers personalized care
At AHN, our care team focuses on your needs throughout the treatment process. We aim to minimize cancer treatment side effects when possible and prioritize your health. Depending on your circumstances, your care team may include:
- Radiation oncologists
- Medical oncologists
- Care navigators
- Physical therapists