Neurosurgery

A team approach to state-of-the-art neurosurgical and neurointerventions for brain and spine conditions

Leading-edge diagnosis, treatment and care, available close to home

Diagnosing and treating conditions of the brain and spine require extraordinary training, skill, sensitivity and compassion. The neurosurgery program at Vassar Brothers Medical Center brings together fellowship-trained, board-certified neurosurgeons and neurointerventional surgeons working in close collaboration with specialists in neurology, physical medicine and rehabilitation.

Every member of our team is committed to providing a high level of personalized, compassionate care. The Vassar Brothers Medical Center neurosurgery program is available 24 hours a day.

Conditions We Treat

  • Brain tumors- primary and metastatic brain, spine and nerve tumors.
  • Brain aneurysms- an abnormal bulge in a brain artery that develops where the blood vessel wall is weakened.
  • Cerebral arteriovenous malformations (AVMs)- an abnormal tangle of blood vessels in the brain or spinal cord. An AVM can cause headaches, bleeding, seizures and stroke-like symptoms.
  • Head trauma- brain hemorrhages, skull fractures, etc.
  • Normal pressure hydrocephalus (NPH)- Usually occurring in adults, NPH is a brain disorder in which excess cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) accumulates in the brain’s ventricles, causing thinking and reasoning problems, difficulty walking, and loss of bladder control.
  • Parkinson’s disease- a progressive disorder of the nervous system causing tremors, stiffness and slowed movement. Vassar Brothers Medical Center offers deep brain stimulation as a treatment.
  • Peripheral nerve disorders- disorders that may involve spinal nerves and their roots and branches, and peripheral nerves.
  • Trigeminal neuralgia- a condition resulting in spontaneous attacks of pain in the face.
  • Tumors of the pituitary gland- Pituitary tumors may cause too much or too little of one or more of the hormones produced by the pituitary gland.
  • Disorders of the carotid and vertebral arteries- several disorders affecting these arteries that supply blood to the brain. If left untreated, these disorders can often lead to stroke.

Treatments and Technology

Our primary diagnostic tools for neurosurgery are physical examination and state-of-the-art imaging technologies including:

  • PET scan- A positron emission tomography (PET) scan is an imaging test that uses a very small dose of a radioactive tracer to help doctors see how the organs and tissues in the body are working. PET scans can detect cancer, heart problems and disorders of the brain and central nervous system.
  • CT scan- A computed tomography (CT) scan uses X-rays and computers to create images of a cross section of the body. Some CT scans use a contrast material to show accurate results.
  • DaTscan- DaTscan is a means of accurately confirming a diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease, as opposed to essential tremor.

Treatments

  • Brain tumor surgery- Our multidisciplinary team focuses on diagnosis and treatment of primary and metastatic brain, spine and nerve tumors which frequently impact the nervous system. Whether tumors are benign or malignant, your treatment will be communicated to you with understanding and kindness.
  • Cerebrovascular surgery- Surgical repair of the blood vessels that supply the brain with oxygen is performed by our specialized team of neurosurgeons for conditions such as:
    • Cerebral arteriovenous malformations (AVMs)
    • Cerebral aneurysms
    • Carotid dissection
    • Carotid stenosis
    • Epistaxis (nosebleeds)
    • Ischemic stroke
    • Trigeminal neuralgia
  • Neuroendovascular surgery- This is a treatment for aneurysms that involves a minimally invasive technique called endovascular coiling, which is used by a neurointerventionalist instead of an incision into the skull. A catheter is used to reach into the brain to repair or place a stent in the damaged blood vessel.
  • Hydrocephalus treatment- For adults with normal pressure hydrocephalus (NPH), a tube called a shunt is surgically placed in the brain or spine to help drain excess cerebrospinal fluid into another part of the body where the fluid can be safely reabsorbed.