Neuro-oncology is the branch of science that comprises the brain and spinal cord neoplasm that give rise to many life-threatening diseases. A spinal tumor is one such disease that could be life-threatening. A spinal tumor is the abnormal growth of cells that begin in the tissue of the spine; it can start anywhere in the spine. There are various types of spinal tumors but not all of them are dangerous. Some are benign that are not dangerous and some are malignant that might be life-threatening in some cases. Primary and metastatic spinal tumors are the most basic type of tumors that originate in the spinal cord. Primary Spinal Tumor is rare and non-cancerous (benign) and only a small percentage of people suffer from it whereas Metastatic Spinal Tumors are cancerous (malignant) and spread to the spine from other areas of the body. The tumor in this case spread very fast and over 70 percent of people suffer from it. Cancer that commonly spreads to the spinal cord includes lung cancer, breast cancer, and prostate cancer.
The spinal cord is not a single entity and it is made up of several vertebral columns and different types of tissues such as in the neck, pelvic and back. Tumors can develop in any part of the spine and at any layer of the tissue. Some of the tissue where tumor or cancer develops include:
Cartilage protecting the spine
Spinal vertebrae and their bone marrow
The spinal disc that cushions the vertebral columns
Blood vessels that carry nutrients to the spinal cord
• Excruciating pain in the back • Stiffness in neck or back • Unable to maintain body balance • Paralysis • Scoliosis (spinal deformity caused by the tumor) • Numbness in legs, hands, and other parts of the body • Less sensitivity toward cold and heat • Fatigue
Based on the signs and symptoms of the patient, the best oncologist in Jaipur generally first examines the patient physically. Further, based on their observation, they recommends certain tests such as
Computed tomography: CT scan or computed tomography is a diagnostic test in which the image shows the size and the shape of the spinal cord in order to visualize the spread of the tumor
X-ray: X-ray helps to show the picture of the spine or the vertebral column to see the joints and cartilages. X-rays are not very detailed and do not correctly diagnose the tumor.
MRI: Magnetic Resonance Imaging or MRI is another diagnostic test used to diagnose the tumor or cancerous cells as it produces a three-dimensional image of the spine that helps in proper visualization of every part of the spine. The doctors are even able to see the vertebrae, nerves, and surrounding areas.
Biopsy: When the other diagnostic tests are not enough for a conclusion about the tumor then in that case a biopsy is done to get the confirmation. In this, a sample is taken from the bone through a syringe and it is sent to a laboratory where the cells are closely observed in order to see if the cells are cancerous or not.
Chemotherapy: In Chemotherapy certain chemical drugs or combinations of drugs are used in order to kill the cancerous cells.
Radiation Therapy: In Radiation Therapy, the doctor uses radiation to kill cancerous cells or the tumor area.
Surgical procedure: In some cases, surgical procedures are used in order to remove the tumor completely. In this, the section or part where the tumor originates is surgically removed along with surrounding bones and tissues so that there are no chances of any remains of cancerous cells. It is a complicated procedure and doctors who are specialized to perform such intense procedures should be consulted as to any negligence during the surgery that might cause permanent damage or cause paralysis. Therefore, do your research and go for the best doctor for consultation and treatment.
Bhagwan Mahaveer cancer hospital and research center have one of the best cancer hospital in Jaipur. We have a team of the best Neuro-oncology specialist in Jaipur who are always available in case of any emergency or query.