Comprehensive Brain Tumor Program
If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with brain, spinal cord or peripheral nerve tumors, the UC Irvine Health Comprehensive Brain Tumor Program offers the largest, most experienced medical team and the most innovative treatments.
As the largest and only comprehensive brain tumor program in Orange County — and one of the few in Southern California — we treat the most patients in the county and have the best medical outcomes.
We are the only program in Orange County with board-certified, fellowship trained neuro-oncologists and highly skilled neurosurgeons. Our world-class team also includes experts chemotherapy, radiation therapy, psychology and psychiatry to provide care tailored to your specific needs.
As part of an academic medical center, we also offer the most clinical trials in the region.
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Our skilled team of neuro-oncologists and neurosurgeons are experts in the diagnosis and treatment of patients with all neurological tumor types, including:
At UC Irvine Health, we take innovative approaches to the diagnosis and treatment of all neurological tumor types, including patient access to leading-edge clinical trials. Treatment plans are discussed regularly and in depth, drawing on the extensive expertise of our multidisciplinary team of physicians and researchers.
Chemotherapy and brain-tumor vaccine immunotherapy are a few of the non-surgical treatments we use to treat brain tumors.
We also use groundbreaking radiotherapy and radiosurgery to pinpoint and treat even the most difficult-to-reach tumors.
Most therapies require minimal recovery time, helping to maintain quality of life for our patients.
Learn more about the treatments we offer patients with brain or other neurological tumors ›
At UC Irvine Health, adult and teen brain tumor patients are treated by the most experienced team of neuro-oncologists and neurosurgeons Orange County.
- With the largest team of neuro-oncologists in the region, we have the expertise to diagnose and treat the full range of brain tumors, including the rarest of the rare.
- Our neuro-oncologists are uniquely trained to recognize and manage the side effects and complications of brain tumor treatments, as well as those caused by the tumors themselves.
- Our fellowship-trained neuro-oncology hospitalist also ensures continuous monitoring of our hospitalized patients — including those Orange County's only Neuroscience Intensive Care Unit (Neuro-ICU) — to promptly meet each individual's needs.
Our coordinated team approach brings together specialists in:
- Interventional radiologists
- Medical oncology
- Neuro-intensive care
- Physical medicine and rehabilitation
- Plastic surgery
- Radiation oncology
We use state-of-the-science technologies to diagnose and treat brain tumors, including:
These technologies enable us to perform a thorough workup and develop a detailed surgical plan for each patient. They also allow our specialists to access areas of the brain that are hard to reach—or formerly inoperable—through image-guided, minimally invasive skull base tumor endoscopies.
Working at Orange County's only university medical center, we are advancing medicine through active brain tumor research into the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of all types of primary and metastatic central nervous system tumors.
And as part of the Chao Family Comprehensive Cancer Center, our patients have access to the latest treatments, therapies and clinical trials. The cancer center is the only National Cancer Institute (NCI)-designated comprehensive cancer center in Orange County and one of only 45 nationwide.
UC Irvine Health patients diagnosed with brain, spine or peripheral nerve tumors may be eligible for clinical trials being conducted by the physicians in our Comprehensive Brain Tumor Program, which is part of our Chao Family Comprehensive Cancer Center.
Our neuro-oncologists are also engaged in the leading-edge research on potential therapies that can translate into new clinical trials. Through these and participation in national clinical trials, our specialists working at Orange County's only National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer center offer our patients access to leading-edge treatments and therapies not generally available elsewhere.
Learn more about our research and clinical trials ›
Our patients benefit from the close collaboration of the area's most skilled brain tumor experts. Our team includes:
Fellowship-trained neuro-oncologists and medical oncologists provide comprehensive evaluation and medical care for brain tumor patients. Whether the problem is seizures, peripheral neuropathy, cognitive difficulties — or the need for chemotherapy, radiation therapy or experimental therapy — these specialists are experienced in designing optimal individual treatment plans for each patient.
We also provide around-the-clock care for our hospitalized brain tumor patients, ensuring that an experienced neuro-oncologist is monitoring their individual needs.
Our neuro-oncologists are:
Our neurosurgeons have advanced training and experience in all types of brain, spine and spinal cord tumor surgeries. Our neurosurgeons are experts in advanced microsurgery, image-guided surgery, awake cortical brain mapping, skull base endoscopic and microsurgical resections, brachytherapy and stereotactic radiosurgery.
Our neurosurgeons are:
These physicians have advanced training in the safe and effective delivery of therapeutic radiation, which is a cornerstone of advanced, multi-modality malignant brain tumor therapy. They perform intensity modulated radiotherapy (IMRT), an advanced technique that spares normal tissue while administering the highest possible therapeutic dose to the tumor.
Our radiation oncologists are:
These pathologists have advanced training in diagnosing diseases of the brain and the nervous system. By studying the biology and molecular gene expression of biopsy tissue samples, they can determine the exact type of tumor, which can guide treatment decisions.
Our neuropathologists are:
Neuroradiologists evaluate abnormalities of the brain and spinal cord by interpreting computed tomography (CT), magnetic resonance (MR) imaging and angiograms. These imaging techniques can help to distinguish tumor progression from treatment response, define the outer limits of infiltrating tumors, and allow neurosurgeons to plan the safest possible procedures. Our neuroradiologists also can deliver chemotherapy just to tumor blood vessels or embolize (break apart) tumors in preparation for surgery.
Our neuroradiologists include:
Other team members include:
- Neurointensivists, fellowship-trained, board-certified specialists in neurological and medical intensive care who staff Orange County's only Neuroscience Intensive Care Unit (Neuro-ICU).
- Neuropsychologists, who are trained to help individuals cope with the psychological, mental and emotional stresses and conditions associated with brain tumors. They can help patients maintain and improve their quality of life during treatment and rehabilitation.
- Neuro-oncology nurses, who are certified in oncology and skilled in caring for patients with brain and spinal tumors in all phases of their treatment.
- Clinical nurses, who are specially trained patient and family educators, responsible for coordinating essential clinical care and providing vital patient and family support services.
- Social workers, who provide information, support and advocacy for patients and their families. They may perform psycho-social assessments and focus on how you and your family are functioning psychologically and socially. They also may serve as an informational resource about insurance policies and help you learn what is covered by your health plan.