Microsurgical Spinal Cord Tumour Resection

Tumours that arise in the spinal cord or adjacent area, are broadly referred to as spinal cord tumours. These tumours may be benign or malignant. Most symptomatic spinal cord tumours require surgical removal. The spinal cord and the region surrounding it contain many delicate vital structures, and tumour resection needs to be done with care and precision. Therefore, surgeons prefer to use microsurgical techniques to resect a spinal cord tumour. The approach used would be determined by your doctor based on the location, size and relative position of the tumour.

Depending on the type of tumour, further treatment such as radiation or chemotherapy may be indicated.

Indications of microsurgical spinal cord tumour resection

Microsurgical spinal cord tumour resection may be indicated for a number of medical conditions including:

  • Neurofibromatosis
  • Spinal schwannomas
  • Meningiomas
  • Von Hippel-Lindau syndrome
  • Hemangioblastomas
  • Astrocytomas
  • Ependymomas
  • Hemangioblastomas
  • Metastatic cancers from other regions

Surgery may indicated in patients have who have symptoms such as numbness in the limbs, intractable pain, speech difficulty etc.

Microsurgical spinal cord tumour resection procedure

The surgery will be performed by a neurosurgeon, who will determine the surgical approach and methodology by considering various factors. This type of surgery is done after you are placed to sleep under general anaesthesia, so that you don’t experience any pain or discomfort during the procedure.

A small incision is made on the back or neck, depending on the location of the tumour. Next, the back muscles and ligaments are pushed aside using special tools. A small amount of bone and cartilage may be removed, to better access the tumour. After the tumour is encountered, gentle dissection of the tumour along the spinal cord junction is continued over the extent of the tumour. This procedure is completed with as little bleeding as possible, to encourage a quicker recovery.

Once as much of the tumour as possible is removed, all the structures are repaired and muscles are returned to their original place. Finally, the incision is closed and the wound is dressed.

Postoperative patient-care

Once the surgery is completed, you may feel slight pain or tenderness around the incision area, this usually dissipates within a few days. Your doctor may prescribe pain medications to help alleviate this pain.

Depending on the type of tumour and how much of it could be removed through surgery, you may require further treatment. Typically this includes radiation or chemotherapy as determined by doctor.


Many of your symptoms of pain and discomfort may be relieved by the surgery, or they may gradually reduce over a period of weeks to months. Consistent follow-up treatments may be required to monitor progress.


Book an Appointment

Book an Appointment online