How Are Brain Tumors Diagnosed?
Diagnosis of a brain tumor typically begins with a neurological examination.
A review of the patient's medical history and a physical exam is performed when a patient complains of symptoms that suggest a brain tumor. The neurological exam is also performed which includes examination of eye movements, hearing, muscle movement, balance, coordination, sense of smell, etc.
Imaging & Biopsies
Once initial evaluations are completed, patients may undergo neuroimaging such as an MRI, CT and/or PET scan. Your neurologist may also suggest a biopsy in which a small sample of tissue is surgically removed from the suspected tumor and examined under a microscope for malignance. The results of the biopsy also provide information on the cancer cell type.
Diagnostic & Therapeutic Tools
Other diagnostic and therapeutic tools include:
- Magnetoencephalography (MEG)
- CT scan
- MRI scan
- Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy (MRS)
- Functional MRI (fMRI)
- Selective cerebral angiography with pre-op tumor embolization
- Frameless stereotactic navigation
- Gamma Knife
- Intra-cavitary chemotherapy
- Intra-operative neurophysiology
- Intra-operative ultrasound guidance
- Micro-neurosurgical techniques
- Tumor resection with motor and/or language mapping