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Adult Brain Tumors Treatment (PDQ®)

  • Last Modified: 04/14/2014

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Stages of Adult Brain Tumors



There is no standard staging system for adult brain and spinal cord tumors.

The extent or spread of cancer is usually described as stages. There is no standard staging system for brain and spinal cord tumors. Brain tumors that begin in the brain may spread to other parts of the brain and spinal cord, but they rarely spread to other parts of the body. Treatment of brain and spinal cord tumors is based the following:

  • The type of cell in which the tumor began.
  • Where the tumor formed in the brain or spinal cord.
  • The amount of cancer left after surgery.
  • The grade of the tumor.

Treatment of brain tumors that have spread to the brain from other parts of the body is based on the number of tumors in the brain.

Imaging tests may be repeated after surgery to help plan more treatment.

Some of the tests and procedures used to diagnose a brain or spinal cord tumor may be repeated after treatment to find out how much tumor is left.