The diagnosis of a brain tumor will be a life-changing event. It is important to find a surgeon with technical expertise and extensive experience in successfully treating these disorders. You should not have to wait long for an appointment, and in some cases you should be seen as soon as possible.
There are many different kinds of tumors. Some are benign, and some are malignant. Some are benign but in a treacherous location that makes them harder to surgically resect or makes total resection difficult or impossible. Some tumors can be cured with microsurgical excision alone, while some might require additional treatments such as chemotherapy, radiotherapy, stereotactic radiosurgery, or a combination of these adjuvant therapies. Some tumors may require staged treatments consisting of more than one surgery and combinations of other therapies. Some brain tumors are not primary brain tumors that arise from cells in the brain, but rather are secondary or metastatic lesions that come from cancers originating in other body tissues and spreading through the blood to the brain. Sometimes a patient has no known cancer diagnosis, and the first sign of his or her cancer might be a metastatic tumor in the brain.
Specific examples of different brain tumor types are discussed in each of the sections below.
- Glioblastoma Multiforme (Grade IV Astrocytoma)
- Low Grade Astrocytoma (Grade II Astrocytoma)
- Anaplastic Astrocytoma (Grade III Astrocytoma)
This type of tumor exhibits more aggressive behavior than a Grade II, but it can be associated with longer survival than a Grade IV if treated with near gross total resection, chemotherapy, and radiotherapy.
- Mixed Oligodendroglioma-Astrocytoma
- Dysembryoplastic Neuroepithelial Tumor (DNET)
- Acoustic Neuroma
- Pituitary Tumors
- Colloid Cyst of the Third Ventricle
I have been privileged to have spent 30 years of my career with a significant focus of my practice dedicated to managing patients with brain tumors. Early in my career this was done in my academic practice position at Ohio State University and later as Neurosurgical Director of Cranial Base Surgery at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. In my later career this has been largely in private practice in Georgia. I am grateful for the trust of my patients which has permitted me to serve as their warrior in fighting their brain tumors. The trust placed in me empowers me to go beyond the limits of comfort at times in the hope of achieving the best result possible for them. It is wonderful when a tumor can be cured, but this is not always the case. Sometimes disappointingly little can be achieved. While some survival periods after treatment of malignant brain tumors can be tragically short, I am always moved by the immense gratitude expressed to me for the additional time and quality of life that the willingness to be as aggressive as possible has brought for my patients.
Scholarly brain tumor articles published in peer-reviewed journals by Dr. Stechison
- Cass S, Hirsch, B, Stechison MT: Evoluation and Advances of the Lateral Surgical Approaches to Cranial Base Neoplasms J of Neuro-Oncology 20:337-361, 1994
- Stechison MT: Neurophysiologic Monitoring During Cranial Base Surgery J of Neuro-Oncology 20:313-325, 1994
- Carrau RI, Curtin HD, Snyderman CH, Bumpus J, Stechison MT: Practical Applications of Image-Guided Navigation During Anterior Craniofacial Resection. Skull Base Surgery 5:55-61, 1995
- Carrau RJ, Snyderman CH, Curtin HD, Janecka IP, Stechison MT, Weissman JL: Computer-Assisted Intraoperative Navigation During Skull Base Surgery. Am J of Otolaryngology 17:95-101, 1996
- Stechison MT: Use of a New Digitized Needle In Frameless Stereotactic Biopsy of Deep Brain Lesions. Neurosurgery 46:239-242, 2000.
- Stechison MT: Invitewd Editorial Comments Concerning Deinsberger W, et al. Somatosensory Evoked Potential Monitoring During Positioning of Patients for Posterior Fossa Surgery in the Semisitting Position. Neurosurgery 434:36-42, 1998
- Stechison MT, Martinez AJ, Burkhart LE: Intraosseous Meningioma Mimicking Fibrous Dysplasia. Patologia (MEX) 34:195-198, 1996
- Stechison MT: Vagus Nerve Monitoring â€“ A Comparison of Percutaneous Versus Vocal Fold Electrode Recording. Am J of Otol 16:703-706, 1995
- Strumph PS, Stechison MT, Lee PA: Meningioma in Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia. Endocr Practice
- Stechison MT, Bernstein MA: Percutaneous Transfacial Needle Biopsy of a Middle Cranial Fossa Mass: Case report and technical note. Neurosurgery 25:996-999, 1989