Dedicated Team with Specialized Expertise

The Cadence Health Brain and Spine Tumor Clinic is a single resource for multidisciplinary care for neurologically based cancer – both primary and metastatic lesions. From a convenient, centralized location at the Cadence Cancer Center – Warrenville, you can meet with your physicians and other caregivers in a single, patient-friendly setting. Caregivers and family members are encouraged to attend.

On each visit, your nurse navigator will manage your medical records and facilitate contact among all physicians on your case as you see them individually. Your complete care team will meet regularly throughout your treatment to review your case and make unified recommendations. That team may include:

  • Neurosurgeon
  • Neurotologist
  • Neuro-oncologist
  • Radiation oncologist
  • Palliative medicine physician
  • Pathologist
  • Nutritionist
  • Social worker
  • Interventional radiologist
  • Advanced practice nurses
  • Geneticist
  • Rehabilitation therapist

Clinic hours are Mondays, 9:00 am – 12:00 pm, after the Physician Tumor Board, where all of the members of your team review your case and work together to ensure a coordinated treatment plan.

For more information, see our Brain and Spine Tumor Center Cadence-health-information brochure.

Cadence Health Cancer Video
Watch a Video: Brain and Spine Tumor Center The Cadence Brain and Spine Tumor Center offers comprehensive multidisciplinary care to patients with brain tumors. Patients have access to novel therapies and cutting-edge treatment options through a robust offering of clinical trials, and are provided a full range of supportive services, including nutritional counseling, rehabilitation and survivorship care. A dedicated nurse navigator serves as your personal guide through treatment.

Diagnosing Brain and Spine Tumors

If you experience chronic headaches, nausea, personality changes, confusion, or disturbances in vision, gait and communication, make an appointment with your doctor for a complete physical examination. Your Cadence Health doctor may use one or more of these procedures to reach a diagnosis:

  • Neurologic exam – an in-office exam that tests your reflexes, muscle strength, eye and mouth movement, coordination and alertness
  • CT scan of the brain or spine – a combination of x-rays and computer technology to produce cross-sectional images that are much more detailed than traditional X-rays
  • Craniotomy – surgical removal of a small piece of the skull to treat a specific part of the brain or to obtain a small tissue sample for further study
  • Lumbar puncture, or spinal tap – a hollow needle is inserted in the lower back to get a sample of cerebrospinal fluid
  • MRI of the brain or spine – using a large magnet and radio waves to produce detailed images of the brain and spinal cord
  • Arteriogram or angiogram – X-rays of the skull, no longer as common as CT scans or MRIs, but still valuable in imaging some tumors
  • PET scan – a nuclear imaging procedure that uses a small amount of radioactive substance to study the anatomy and function of the parts of the brain
  • Magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) – similar to an MRI, an MRS produces images to analyze function rather than just shape of the brain anatomy

Brain and Spine Tumor Treatments

Your treatment for brain and spine tumors will depend on your overall health, extent of the disease and your tolerance for various therapies. The sequence and combination of treatments will depend on the site and stage of your cancer.

The Brain & Spine Tumor Center offers comprehensive multidisciplinary care to patients with brain tumors. It is the only brain tumor program in the western suburbs of Chicago to have a fellowship trained oncologic neurosurgeon and neuro-oncologist, and a brain tumor-dedicated radiation oncologist*. These specialists collaborate with your referring doctor to develop a personalized treatment plan for you from a convenient, centralized location at the Cadence Cancer Center in Warrenville.

You can meet with your physicians and other caregivers in a single, patient-friendly setting. Talk with your doctor to see if you are a good candidate for this type of clinic.

  • Clinic takes place at the Cadence Cancer Center in Warrenville
  • Patients are seen by a team of providers who round one-by-one in the clinic.
  • Caregivers and family members are encouraged to attend

Clinic hours follow the Physician Tumor Board, where all of the members of your team review your case and work together to ensure a coordinated treatment plan.

Our surgeons specialize in the care of complex tumors including glioblastoma, astrocytoma, oligodendroglioma, ependymoma, medulloblastoma, acoustic neuroma, meningiomas and glomus tumors.

Your treatment may include:

Surgery

There are several types of surgery available for tumors of the brain and spinal column. Talk to your doctor about the best choice, based on the size and location of your cancer and its stage. A craniotomy (surgical removal of a small piece of the skull) allows surgeons to treat a specific part of the brain, using high-tech imaging techniques to guide them.

Intraoperative MRI (iMRI)

Cadence Health – Central DuPage Hospital is the only hospital in Illinois to offer full-field intraoperative MRI (i-MRI), a state-of-the-art surgical technology that provides high-quality, more-detailed imaging viewable during surgery. By integrating this technology with advanced surgical techniques, your neurosurgeon can conduct scans during surgery to more safely and precisely remove brain tumors, especially around sensitive areas of the brain. This ensures maximum possible tumor removal and minimizes the removal of healthy tissue.

Radiation Therapy

Your radiation oncologist may use high-energy radiation to kill cancer cells and shrink tumors.

  • Proton therapy – One of the most precise forms of radiation therapy, proton treatment can be precisely controlled so most of the radiation ends up directly in the tumor, reducing the risk of damage to surrounding healthy tissues and causing fewer short- and long-term side effects. It has been effective in treating certain types of brain and spine cancer. Cadence Health is the first and only health system in Illinois and the ninth in the country to offer proton therapy.

  • Stereotactic Radiosurgery (SRS) – despite its name, radiosurgery is a treatment, not a surgical procedure. Stereotactic radiosurgery is a precise form of radiation therapy that focuses high-powered X-rays on localized tumors. This treatment is often used for brain tumors.

Chemotherapy

Drugs are administered, either by intravenously or orally, to interfere with the cancer cell’s ability to reproduce. Your experienced neuro-oncologist will determine the best combination of medications for your tumor. If appropriate, the medical oncologists at Cadence Health may consult directly with the team at Cleveland Clinic to discuss your treatment options.

Palliative Medicine

Side effects from cancer treatment can impact your quality of life and your body’s ability to respond to treatment. Cadence Health is home to a diverse team of palliative medicine specialists who work with your oncologist to help relieve your pain and manage your symptoms. Cadence Health palliative medicine specialists:

  • Treat pain and other physical symptoms of cancer, such as fatigue, nausea, trouble sleeping, poor appetite, breathing difficulties, and weight loss
  • Treat emotional symptoms, such as depression and anxiety
  • Improve your body’s ability to tolerate cancer treatments
  • Help you better understand tests, procedures, and options
  • Guide you and those who care for you to helpful outside resources

From your initial diagnosis throughout your care, the palliative medicine team at Cadence Health can help you remain stronger in your fight against cancer and feel better, every step of the way.

Clinical Trials

You can participate in clinical trials, which focus on new treatment options for certain brain tumors.

*In the spirit of keeping you well informed the physician(s) identified are neither agents or employees of Cadence Health or any of its affiliate member organizations. They have chosen our facilities as the place they wish to treat and care for their private patients.

Advanced Technology & Access to Clinical Trials

At the Cadence Brain and Spine Tumor Center, you have access to the latest technological advancements to treat brain tumors. Cadence Health is the first and only health system in Illinois to make ultra-precise proton therapy available at the CDH Proton Center. Proton therapy offers fewer side effects and less risk of damage to healthy tissue, which is especially important when treating brain and spine tumors.

Additionally, Cadence Health offers sophisticated and precise forms of radiotherapy for brain tumors including Stereotactic Radiosurgery (SRS), Tomotherapy®, and RapidArc®. These advanced radiotherapy technologies improve dose conformity and may shorten treatment times.

CDH is the only hospital in Illinois to offer full-field intraoperative MRI (i-MRI), a state-of-the-art surgical technology that provides high-quality, more-detailed imaging viewable during surgery. By integrating this technology with advanced surgical techniques, your neurosurgeon can conduct scans during surgery to more safely and precisely remove brain tumors, especially around sensitive areas of the brain.

Clinical Trials

Clinical trials study new ways to prevent, diagnose and treat brain or spine tumors. At Cadence Health, you have access to a range of trials. A list of open brain tumor clinical trials is available here.

Learn more about the benefits and guidelines for participating in a clinical trial from the National Cancer Institute**.

Know what questions to ask** when evaluating a clinical study at ClinicalTrials.gov**, a service of the U.S. National Institutes of Health.

*The CDH Proton Center (Center) is a joint venture between Cadence Health and Radiation Oncology Consultants, Ltd. Both organizations are dedicated to providing proton therapy in Illinois. The physicians that practice at the Center are neither agents nor employees of Cadence Health, nor CDH. They have chosen this facility as the place they wish to care for and treat their private patients.

**By clicking on these websites, you are leaving the Cadence Health website. These websites are independent resources. Cadence Health does not operate or control the content of these websites.

Support Services for Brain and Spine Tumors

You have access to a wide range of support resources at the Brain and Spine Tumor Center, including a nutritionist, social worker and financial counselor. Additionally, LivingWell Cancer Resource Center can be a vital component of your treatment and recovery. LivingWell serves as a gathering place providing comfort and community to anyone experiencing the effects of cancer. The LivingWell staff works to ensure that you and your family feel less isolated, better informed, more hopeful and empowered to take on the challenge of facing cancer.

LivingWell services include more than 60 free-of-charge educational classes, support and networking groups, exercise classes, counseling, nutrition classes and stress reduction classes. The Brain Tumor Resource and Support Group meets the first and third Wednesdays of each month from 7:30 pm – 9:00 pm. For more information or a schedule of events, contact the staff at info@livingwellcrc.org or 630.262.1111.

The American Cancer Society’s Wig Boutique at LivingWell lets you select a brand new wig, hat and scarf at no cost while you are undergoing cancer treatment. An experienced American Cancer Society volunteer will help you select and fit the right wig.

living well cancer resource center treatment recovery cancer.

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