When you’ve been diagnosed with neurological cancer, such as brain, spine or nerve cancer, you want care from a team of compassionate experts who use today’s most promising treatments. At the University of Missouri Health Care’s Ellis Fischel Cancer Center, our highly experienced neurosciences and cancer care experts work together to help you fight cancer.

photo of Dr. Litofsky and patient

As providers at an academic health center and Missouri's state-designated cancer center, we offer the highest level of care for brain and spine cancer. We specialize in some of today’s most progressive treatments, including innovative, new treatments through clinical trials. Due to our experience, our doctors often see some of the most complex and advanced cancers. That means your team is well-equipped to give you the very best care.

Personalized brain cancer treatment

Our skill and expertise are only part of what makes MU Health Care a trusted choice for brain and spine cancer treatment. It’s our experience combined with our personalized approach that makes us the leader in mid-Missouri.

We consider your needs when designing your treatment plan, including:

  • Your team meets regularly to discuss your care and anticipate your needs.
  • We try to coordinate your appointments on the same day so there’s less travel time.
  • We consider the most convenient locations for you to receive care so you can get care as close to home as possible.

Our comprehensive cancer care team includes:

  • Cancer doctors (oncologists), including those who specialize in radiation (radiation oncologists) and chemotherapy treatment (medical oncologists)
  • Neurosurgeons
  • Nurses specially trained in cancer care
  • Social Workers
  • Dietitians (nutrition planning and support)

You’ll also receive support from social workers and other clinicians who help you and your family coordinate all aspects of your care — from setting up appointments and care conferences to providing education and emotional support. We make sure you have the information and resources you need to make treatment as convenient and worry-free as possible.

Comprehensive care for brain cancer

Your doctors work collaboratively to design a personalized care plan that offers you the best possible outcome. Your treatment may include one or more therapies, such as:

  • Chemotherapy (medicine that kills cancer cells)
  • Neurosurgery (surgery to remove tumors)
  • Radiation therapy, including stereotactic radiosurgery)
  • Rehabilitation (special services for cancer recovery)

We use the latest techniques in cancer treatment, from sophisticated imaging technology and specialized instruments for delicate surgery to the latest cancer medicines. Your team works with you to manage treatment side effects and keep you as comfortable as possible during every stage of treatment.

We offer advanced treatment for benign (noncancerous), malignant (cancerous) and metastatic (cancer that spreads) brain and spine tumors, including:

  • Acoustic neuroma
  • Anaplastic astrocytoma
  • Central nervous system (CNS) lymphoma
  • Glioblastoma multiforme
  • Hemangioblastoma
  • Meningioma
  • Metastatic carcinoma
  • Neurocytoma
  • Oligodendroglioma
  • Pituitary adenoma
  • Vestibular schwannoma

Leading neurosurgical treatment for cancer

Our neurosurgical team — which includes specialists in neurosurgery, cancer, head and neck surgery, plastic surgery and endocrinology — has the expertise to perform even the most complex surgeries. We use the least-invasive surgical methods possible to give you the best outcome.

We use advanced technology for brain, spine and nerve surgery, including:

  • Intraoperative image guidance. Sophisticated computer-assisted imaging helps guide your surgeon during delicate surgical procedures.
  • Brain mapping. This painless brain surgery is done while you’re awake, which allows your surgeon to remove tumors without damaging your speech or function.
  • Stereotactic radiosurgery. This nonsurgical procedure destroys tumors with a focused beam of radiation while sparing surrounding tissue.
  • Intraoperative chemotherapy. Your surgeon can implant tiny beads of medicine directly into the area where a brain tumor was removed to prevent regrowth.

You can feel confident in the advanced training, skill and experience of our multidisciplinary neurosurgical cancer care team.