Brain Tumor Program: Neurosurgery

If you have a brain tumor, surgery is often the first step in an effective treatment plan. We know you may be concerned about the procedure and recovery.

UC Irvine Health neurosurgeons perform more brain tumor surgeries than any other surgeons in Orange County and surrounding communities. Our experience and expertise, combined with our advanced technologies provide you with the comprehensive, effective care you need. 

Brain tumor surgery: our approach

Our team has extensive experience using all types of surgical techniques, including minimally invasive and traditional procedures. Together, our neurosurgeons with specialty training in brain tumor surgery perform more than 250 brain tumor surgeries each year. This high volume gives us a unique depth of expertise not found at many other centers.

Highlights of our neurosurgery program include:

  • Integrated care: Our surgeons work with experts across disciplines that include neurology, oncology and radiology. Together they collaborate to create a personalized treatment plan for each patient. If you need additional treatment, such as radiation, after surgery, they work with our radiation oncologists to provide you with seamless, coordinated care. Meet our team ›
  • Latest tools and technology: We use the most innovative technology available today, such as BrainPath®, to remove tumors and preserve normal brain function. Learn more about brain tumor treatments ›
  • Thorough post-surgery and follow-up care: We are one of the few centers with such a large team of specialists trained in treating patients with neurological disorders. Our neurologists and nurses provide you with 24/7 care and monitoring while you recover after surgery. Find out more about the Neuroscience Intensive Care Unit (Neuro-ICU) ›
  • Excellent outcomes: We have plans in place to assure your safety at all times. Our team includes neuro-critical care experts who specialize in caring for patients after brain surgery. We use the best available technology to monitor your brain around the clock for any possible signs of complications.
  • Comprehensive support services: Whether you are looking for emotional support or you think you may need a helping hand once you return home, we are here for you. We offer a broad range of support services, including social workers and certified chaplains who can help relieve some of the stress that can go along with brain tumor treatment. Learn more about our patient support services ›
  • Research and clinical trials: Our neurosurgeons have contributed to the development of today’s most innovative neurosurgery technologies through research and clinical trials. Their advances give you access to new technologies before they are widely available. Learn more about research and clinical trials ›

Types of brain tumor surgery

Our neurosurgery program is at the leading-edge of brain tumor care. We consistently adopt new techniques, giving us a range of expertise that helps our patients achieve outstanding results. Whenever possible, we treat patients using minimally invasive techniques, which result in less pain, faster recovery and a shorter hospital stay.

Specialized brain tumor surgeries we perform include:

  • Skull base surgery: The skull base supports the bottom of the brain and houses nerves and blood vessels that support critical functions, such as breathing. Our specially trained skull base surgeons provide safe, effective treatment for tumors in this area.
  • Endoscopic endonasal surgery: This technique works by advancing a long thin tube with a light and camera at the tip (endoscope) through your nose, which helps us access tumors in the front of your brain. Going through the nose helps avoid an incision on your face and nearly eliminates the risk of cosmetic problems after surgery. Learn more about endoscopic endonasal surgery ›
  • Keyhole craniotomy: This technique requires one or more dime-sized holes in your skull (craniotomy) through which we place sophisticated tools and imaging devices to carry out your procedure. Find out how we use the keyhole craniotomy technique to perform minimally invasive brain surgery ›
  • Pinhole craniotomy: Pinhole craniotomy is similar to keyhole craniotomy, but uses a much smaller incision. We use pinhole craniotomy along with advanced neurosurgery technology, such as the ROSA™ robotic neurosurgery device, to access the most difficult tumors.

Brain tumor surgery: technologies we use

We used the latest neurosurgery technologies in Orange County. These technologies make it possible to safely remove tumors with the least possible disruption to healthy tissue.

Our neurosurgery technologies include:

  • BodyTom®:  A first-of-its-kind, fully-body computed tomography (CT) scanner, BodyTom captures real-time, three-dimensional (3-D) images of the brain during surgery. The scanner assures a high level of accuracy for procedures near areas that control critical functioning, such as breathing and swallowing. Learn more about BodyTom for neurosurgery ›
  • BrainPath®: We are among the first programs in Southern California using the BrainPath®  Neurosurgery System. The device gently navigates folds of brain tissue much like a boat moving through water. Sophisticated navigation technology helps us access and remove tumors deep within the brain without disrupting nearby tissue. Find out more about the BrainPath system ›
  • ROSA™ robotic device: We are the first hospital on the West Coast and one of only a dozen nationwide using the ROSA™ device. Combining robot technology with our surgeon’s gentle touch, our team carries out complex procedures with a high degree of accuracy.
  • Visualase® thermal laser ablation: We are one of the first Southern California hospitals offering Visualase. This MRI-guided surgical tool precisely targets and destroys brain tumors using heat from a special laser light (infrared technology). Real-time imaging helps us monitor the tumor and surrounding tissue to ensure successful treatment while minimizing your risk of complications. Read about minimally invasive surgery with Visualase ›

Contact us

To schedule an appointment, call 714-456-8000 or fill out an online request form. You can also send us an email.

Our 24-hour promise: If you are a new patient, one of our brain tumor physicians will return your call within 24 hours and you can be seen in our offices within 48 hours after insurance approval.