Neurological cancers are a rare type of cancer that affects the brain or spine. In some cases, it can affect both areas of the body at the same time. Tumours that occur in the brain are addressed as brain cancer, and spine tumours are addressed as spine cancer. These cancers occur when healthy cells inside your brain start proliferating and form a malignant mass or tumour. If not treated, these neurological tumours can invade into nearby tissue and spread to another part of the brain. Hence, neuro-oncology treatment in Udaipur
implements various types of modalities to destroy the tumour or remove it.
For a small tumour in the early stages, surgery is the most viable treatment option to remove the tumour. For large tumours, treatment usually begins with surgery to remove the tumour along with the affected organs and tissues. However, it will only cure cancer if all the affected cells get removed. Hence, the cancer hospital in Udaipur
follows surgery with radiation therapy and chemotherapy to prevent a recurrence.
But administering chemo and radiation for treating brain tumours is challenging. Our body has a blood-brain barrier that normally protects the brain and spinal cord from toxic chemicals. And this barrier also keeps out many types of chemotherapy that uses cell-killing drugs. Surgery is often not a viable option because these tumours usually grow near a delicate part of the brain or spinal cord. Even if the surgeon can remove the original tumour, affected tissues near the tumour can become malignant in future without radiation therapy.
But in the past decade, innovations in cancer management have improved the lives of many brain cancer patients. More innovative surgeries, a better understanding of tumours and more targeted delivery of radiation therapy have enabled Neuro-oncology doctor in Jaipur
to prolong lives and improve the quality of life for many people with brain tumours.
Here are the innovative types of treatments
that have improved the outcomes of neurological cancer:
For a cancerous tumour, surgery can relieve symptoms from the tumour pressing on the brain. It’s usually the primary treatment for a brain tumour that involves removing the tumour and some surrounding tissue during an operation. It can be performed to relieve neurological symptoms or take tissue for testing and genetic analysis. It can also make other brain tumour treatments more effective and improve the prognosis of a brain tumour.
But all this has been made possible due to the rapid advances in surgery for brain tumours, including cortical mapping, enhanced imaging, and fluorescent dyes.
- Cortical mapping: It has allowed neuro-surgeons to identify areas of the brain that control the senses, language, and motor skills.
- Enhanced imaging devices: These devices have enabled surgeons to perform surgery with precision. In image-Guided Surgery (IGS), surgeons can map out the location of the tumour and remove the tumour accurately.
- A fluorescent dye: These aminolevulinic acids can be given by mouth the morning before the surgery to highlight cancer cells. Surgeons use a special microscope and light to see the cancerous cells and safely remove as much of the tumour as possible.
Surgeons can also operate while the patient is awake to remove brain tumours near the brain’s speech centre. It helps them avoid damage to the part that controls speech. The patient gets awakened after exposing the brain. Then, they will use special electrical stimulation techniques to identify the specific part of the brain that controls speech and other functions.
In radiation therapy, oncologists use high-intensity radiation particles to destroy cancer cells. It can also be given before surgery to stop tumour’s growth or after surgery to prevent a relapse. A radiation oncologist
uses a machine to direct external beam radiation onto the affected area of the body. External-beam radiation therapy is given in the following ways:
- Conventional radiation therapy. It uses anatomic landmarks and x-rays for whole-brain radiation therapy. However, this technique is usually appropriate for brain metastases in a large area.
- 3-dimensional conformal radiation therapy (3D-CRT). It’s used to target the radiation beams directly at the tumour while saving the healthy tissue from the effects of radiation therapy.
- Intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT). It’s a type of 3D-CRT that can precisely target a tumour and deliver higher doses of radiation to the tumour. However, it gives less radiation to the surrounding healthy tissue. In IMRT, the radiation beams can split into smaller beams to direct more radiation at the tumour.
- Proton therapy. It’s a type of external-beam radiation therapy that uses high energy protons to destroy cancer cells. It causes fewer side effects than X-rays therapy and is used for tumours that require less radiation.
- Stereotactic radiosurgery. It involves giving a high dose of radiation directly to the tumour while sparing healthy tissue. It can use a modified linear accelerator or a robotic device to direct radiation to sensitive structures, including the optic nerves or brain stem.
With these techniques, neuro-oncology treatment in Udaipur has become more precise and causes minimum damage to the surrounding healthy brain tissue. And in certain situations, a combination of these techniques is also an option to yield better outcomes.