Providence Medical Center
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Services » Neurosciences » Neurosurgery


The Providence Neurosciences department has a gifted group of medical professionals and equipped them with the most advanced medical technology available.

New techniques allow our neurosurgeons, backed by our top-notch surgery staff, to perform many procedures using microsurgery and minimally invasive procedures that minimize risk and allow you to recover much faster.

For example, Providence is one of the few hospitals in the metro area to perform intracranial coiling, which involves inserting a stent to prevent aneurysms from rupturing.

We also can perform stereotactic radiosurgery, which delivers high doses of radiation to pinpoint locations, sparring healthy tissue.

Our doctors regularly attract patients from throughout the Midwest and Rocky Mountain states. And patients have come from as far away as Europe to take advantage of our procedures

In this section

Image Guided Surgery

Revolutionary technology helps heal patients

Providence Medical Center is outfitted with the latest medical equipment available to aid our medical staff in performing advanced procedures. For instance, patients with brain tumors or those who need certain spine surgery are benefiting from our premier stereotactic image guided system.

It downloads computerized tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) reports, merging them with computer software in the operating room. The refined data provides surgeons with a 3-D image of the tumor or spinal abnormality and its exact location, allowing for its safe removal.

Using special probes, the surgeon touches the skull and, in real time transmission, is able to view the tumor in the brain. Frameless stereotactic technology, which provides the surgeons a new way to navigate three dimensionally, will be available in the future.

For patients, the technology delivers increased surgical accuracy, a minimum amount of invasiveness and a smaller incision, enhancing surgical safety. The technology also shortens the length of time for complex surgical procedures.

Procedures We Perform

Spinal microdiscectomy - with and without fusion, on all levels of the spine to correct herniated discs

Lumbar microdissection - to solve compression problems

Craniotomies - to treat aneurysms or remove tumors

Spine stabilization - to relieve pressure on the spinal cord

Intracranial aneurysm coiling - to prevent aneurysms from rupturing

Carotid endarterectomy - to treat narrowing of the arteries from the heart to the head (carotid stenosis), which is a common cause of stroke. See Interventional Radiology.

Safe and Successful Outcomes

Providence goes beyond the basics when it comes to patient safety. Here are some of the techniques our neurosurgeons use to make sure you have a safe as well as successful experience:

Intraoperative fluoroscopy - provides imaging throughout procedures.

Nerve integrity monitoring - allows surgeons to make sure they have accomplished their goals while the patient is still in surgery.

State-of-the-art microscopes - puts more eyes on you in the operating room. Our Zeiss system has monitors, so the operating staff sees what the surgeon does. Its unparalleled resolution also affords greater precision.

Radiation Technology

Our patients at the Radiation Oncology Center at Providence Medical Center benefit from the most sophisticated technology. It enables our medical team to reduce treatment time for cancer patients, pinpoint treatment locations with greater precision and deliver results that are more effective.

Stereotactic Radiosurgery (SRS)

Our Varian TrilogyTM system is one of the most advanced forms of medical technology available in the country for delivering radiation therapy.

It allows radiation oncologists to perform stereotactic radiosurgery with unparalleled precision. They can zero in on the treatment area and spare your surrounding healthy tissue. Trilogy aims higher doses of radiation at smaller areas over a shorter period of time. As a result, your treatment sessions may be shorter and less frequent. Patients treated with the system usually have improved outcomes.

Because SRS delivers high-intensity radiation over a limited number of treatment sessions, it may serve as an alternative to invasive surgery. The system is particularly effective in treating small lesions and early metastases. Patients who are not candidates for surgery can also benefit from this non-invasive treatment.

In the past, providing radiation therapy for cancer in the lung, liver or pancreas posed a unique challenge since these organs move as the patient breathes. But now, utilizing Trilogy's automated respiratory gating system, the medical experts at Providence can easily treat these difficult areas. First, the Trilogy system tracks the patient's normal breathing cycle. Then, during treatment, it automatically turns the radiation beam on only when the tumor falls within the planned treatment field. The result is unmatched tumor treatment and preservation of healthy tissue.

The Trilogy system has three components. The high-powered medical linear accelerator focuses radiation directly on the tumor, sparing the healthy surrounding tissue. The multi-leaf collimator configures the radiation beam to match the three-dimensional shape of the tumor. The system's On-Board ImagerTM provides fast, accurate, real-time tumor tracking and automated patient positioning.

The Clinac Linear Accelerator

This state-of-the-art treatment machine is can produce seven different energies to treat different types of tumors more effectively. Doctors use one of the two high-energy X-rays to treat deep tumors. They use one of the five electron energies to treat superficial tumors.

The Varian Clinic Accelerator offers Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy (IMRT). This breakthrough treatment has enhanced the chance of a cure and decreased complication rates for countless cancer patients all over the world. Clinicians use this sophisticated equipment and software to treat patients with a "smart beam" that precisely targets tumors, while protecting surrounding healthy tissues.

The Varian Clinic Accelerator also offers:

  • Digital imaging system - designed to provide electronic images to verify the treatment alignment and treatment shape
  • Computer treatment record and verify network - an electronic chart containing everything from a patient's registration to treatment record
  • A system that links patient diagnostic images from CT and MRI scans directly to the computer control functions of the linear accelerator

CT Simulator

Prior to therapy, we design customized treatment plans for each patient using the CT simulator, a computer-assisted machine similar to the accelerator. The simulator lets the radiation oncologist view the treatment area with and without fluoroscopic imaging. With these precise images, the radiation oncologist can define the areas to be treated, determine the best angles for radiation and specify the areas to be blocked and protected.

Mobile PET CAT scanner

Our patients can now have Positron Emission Tomography (PET) and Computerized Axial Tomography (CAT) scans done at the same time. We have a relationship with DMS Imaging to send a mobile unit to Providence Medical Center as needed.

The highly sensitive PET scan detects the metabolic signal of actively growing cancer cells in the body. And the CAT scan provides a detailed picture of the internal anatomy that reveals the location, size and shape of abnormal cancerous growths.

Each imaging test has particular benefits and limitations alone, but when the PET and CAT scans are "fused" together, the combined image provides a total picture of both metabolism and anatomy of cancer. It allows doctors to pinpoint the location of cancer within the body before making treatment recommendations.

Providence Medical Center