Diagnosed with a spinal tumor? Trust Hoag

Diagnosed with spinal tumors? You deserve the best team, with the best technology and the best track record when it comes to treating serious conditions of the neck and spine. Trust Orange County's leader for spinal issues. Trust Hoag Spine Center to help you heal. Committed to a robust, whole-body approach to diagnosing and treating serious spinal issues, Hoag Spine Center is a multidisciplinary team that includes physical and occupational therapists, dietitians and preeminent, board-certified neurosurgeons. They're all dedicated to conservative, restorative treatment strategies that help patients come back strong from spinal issues.

Spinal Tumor care at Hoag

That nagging pain in your back might just be a muscle pull. Or it might be something else. Don't second guess. Know for sure, with Hoag. At Hoag Spine Center, we're committed to helping every patient find a fuller recovery through accurate diagnosis, and we're a nationally-recognized leader in advanced therapies, next-gen treatments and less-invasive techniques. Facing a spinal tumor diagnosis? Seek the second opinion that could save your life. Hoag Spine Center is here to help.

Common Questions

What are spinal tumors?

Spinal tumors are abnormal growths of tissue inside the spinal column. If they originate in the column, they are called primary tumors, which can be either benign or malignant. If they originate in another part of the body, they are likely malignant and called secondary or metastatic tumors.

How are spinal tumors diagnosed?

A thorough medical examination with emphasis on back pain and neurological deficits is the first step to diagnosing a spinal tumor. Radiological tests are required for an accurate and positive diagnosis.

  • Computed tomography scan (CT or CAT scan): A CT/CAT scan can show the shape and size of the spinal canal, its contents and the structures around it. It also is very good at visualizing bony structures.
  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI): A spinal tumor MRI can show the spinal cord, nerve roots and surrounding areas, as well as enlargement, degeneration and tumors.
  • Bone Scan: Helpful as an adjunct for identification of bone tumors (such as primary bone tumors of the spine), infection, and diseases involving abnormal bone metabolism.
  • Biopsy. The only way to determine the exact type of a spinal tumor is to examine a small tissue sample (biopsy) under a microscope.

What are the risk factors for spinal tumors?

There is no clear answer as to why most spinal tumors develop. Experts suspect that defective genes play a role. 

Spinal cord tumors are more common in people with two genetic diseases:

Neurofibromatosis 2: In this hereditary (genetic) disorder, benign tumors may develop in the arachnoid layer of the spinal cord or in the supporting glial cells. However, the more common tumors associated with this disorder affect the nerves related to hearing and can inevitably lead to loss of hearing in one or both ears.

Von Hippel-Lindau disease: This rare, multi-system disorder is associated with benign blood vessel tumors (hemangioblastomas) in the brain, retina and spinal cord, and with other types of tumors in the kidneys or adrenal glands.

Common Questions

I’ve been diagnosed with spinal tumors. Now what do I do?

Trust Hoag. At Hoag, our fellowship-trained team of spine specialists is certified to treat a host of spinal conditions. We’re committed to treating every patient like a person, not a chart. Hoag provides the latest technology and treatments, with minimally-invasive techniques designed to help speed recovery with less pain. Meet the Hoag Spine Center Team.

What treatments are available for spinal tumors?

The type of tumor and whether it arises from the structures of the spine or spinal canal or has spread to your spine from elsewhere in your body also must be considered in determining a treatment plan.

The following are some available treatments:

  • Surgery
  • Radiation therapy
  • Chemotherapy
  • Other drugs
Services offered

Minimally-invasive robotic spinal surgery at Hoag

When your spine is on the line, trust Hoag for spine surgery. Hoag was the first hospital on the West Coast to offer the Mazor X Stealth™   advanced robotic navigation platform for spinal surgery. Combining 3D pre-operative planning tools with robotic precision, the system provides surgeons with advanced visualization of your body’s unique internal structures, and you with the great chance to come back strong from back surgery. Learn more about advanced robotic surgery at Hoag.

Award-Winning Care for the Spine at Hoag

There’s a reason why U.S. News and World Report’s 2022-2023 list of top hospitals ranked Hoag as High Performing — their top distinction — in neurology, neurosurgery and spinal fusion. A higher standard of care. Accurate diagnosis for more successful treatment. A multidisciplinary team of spine-care specialists who are committed to seeing you heal. That’s spinal care at Hoag. Read an essay about a real Hoag patient’s spine-care journey.

Confused about your condition? Trust Hoag Nurse Navigators

Facing a health issue that could involve surgery can be confusing for anyone. That’s why the Hoag Spine Center offers our unique Nurse Navigator program. These trained nurses are there for you, both as a guide and a resource for medically-accurate information about your unique diagnosis. It’s one more way Hoag is here for you through your journey as a patient, every step of the way. Get started with our spine nurse navigator.

Common Questions

What are spinal tumors?

Spinal tumors are abnormal growths of tissue inside the spinal column. If they originate in the column, they are called primary tumors, which can be either benign or malignant. If they originate in another part of the body, they are likely malignant and called secondary or metastatic tumors.

How are spinal tumors diagnosed?

A thorough medical examination with emphasis on back pain and neurological deficits is the first step to diagnosing a spinal tumor. Radiological tests are required for an accurate and positive diagnosis.

  • Computed tomography scan (CT or CAT scan): A CT/CAT scan can show the shape and size of the spinal canal, its contents and the structures around it. It also is very good at visualizing bony structures.
  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI): A spinal tumor MRI can show the spinal cord, nerve roots and surrounding areas, as well as enlargement, degeneration and tumors.
  • Bone Scan: Helpful as an adjunct for identification of bone tumors (such as primary bone tumors of the spine), infection, and diseases involving abnormal bone metabolism.
  • Biopsy. The only way to determine the exact type of a spinal tumor is to examine a small tissue sample (biopsy) under a microscope.

What are the risk factors for spinal tumors?

There is no clear answer as to why most spinal tumors develop. Experts suspect that defective genes play a role. 

Spinal cord tumors are more common in people with two genetic diseases:

Neurofibromatosis 2: In this hereditary (genetic) disorder, benign tumors may develop in the arachnoid layer of the spinal cord or in the supporting glial cells. However, the more common tumors associated with this disorder affect the nerves related to hearing and can inevitably lead to loss of hearing in one or both ears.

Von Hippel-Lindau disease: This rare, multi-system disorder is associated with benign blood vessel tumors (hemangioblastomas) in the brain, retina and spinal cord, and with other types of tumors in the kidneys or adrenal glands.

Common Questions

I’ve been diagnosed with spinal tumors. Now what do I do?

Trust Hoag. At Hoag, our fellowship-trained team of spine specialists is certified to treat a host of spinal conditions. We’re committed to treating every patient like a person, not a chart. Hoag provides the latest technology and treatments, with minimally-invasive techniques designed to help speed recovery with less pain. Meet the Hoag Spine Center Team.

What treatments are available for spinal tumors?

The type of tumor and whether it arises from the structures of the spine or spinal canal or has spread to your spine from elsewhere in your body also must be considered in determining a treatment plan.

The following are some available treatments:

  • Surgery
  • Radiation therapy
  • Chemotherapy
  • Other drugs

Services offered

Minimally-invasive robotic spinal surgery at Hoag

When your spine is on the line, trust Hoag for spine surgery. Hoag was the first hospital on the West Coast to offer the Mazor X Stealth™   advanced robotic navigation platform for spinal surgery. Combining 3D pre-operative planning tools with robotic precision, the system provides surgeons with advanced visualization of your body’s unique internal structures, and you with the great chance to come back strong from back surgery. Learn more about advanced robotic surgery at Hoag.

Award-Winning Care for the Spine at Hoag

There’s a reason why U.S. News and World Report’s 2022-2023 list of top hospitals ranked Hoag as High Performing — their top distinction — in neurology, neurosurgery and spinal fusion. A higher standard of care. Accurate diagnosis for more successful treatment. A multidisciplinary team of spine-care specialists who are committed to seeing you heal. That’s spinal care at Hoag. Read an essay about a real Hoag patient’s spine-care journey.

Confused about your condition? Trust Hoag Nurse Navigators

Facing a health issue that could involve surgery can be confusing for anyone. That’s why the Hoag Spine Center offers our unique Nurse Navigator program. These trained nurses are there for you, both as a guide and a resource for medically-accurate information about your unique diagnosis. It’s one more way Hoag is here for you through your journey as a patient, every step of the way. Get started with our spine nurse navigator.