Brain and Spine Tumor Center
Lifespan Cancer Institute

Spine and Sacral Chordoma Center

To learn more about the Spine and Sacral Chordoma Center at the Brain and Spine Tumor Center, expand a section below. 

What Are Chordomas?

Chordoma is a rare and aggressive bone tumor. It grows from remnants of embryonic cells present at birth and continues to grow anywhere along the spine from the skull base to the sacrum. Although slow growing, they can be life-threatening if not treated properly. The Spine and Sacral Chordoma Center at Rhode Island Hospital combines extensive experience and technical expertise in the multidisciplinary treatment of sacral chordomas.

Treatment Options

Surgical resection of sacral chordomas is the first-line treatment option for these tumors. Effective treatment is challenging and often requires the removal of the entire tumor in one piece (en-bloc resection technique), while operating near critical neural and vascular structures. We utilize advanced surgical techniques and technology, such as intraoperative computed tomography, intraoperative spinal navigation, and neurophysiologic monitoring to maximize the chance of a safe tumor resection. Postoperative adjuvant stereotactic radiation is commonly given in the event of recurrent or residual disease.

Treatment Team

Our center is led by Ziya Gokaslan, MD, chief of neurosurgery at Rhode Island Hospital and The Miriam Hospital and chairman of the department of neurosurgery at The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University. He is a world-renowned neurosurgeon with unique expertise in spinal chordoma treatment. Our team of neurosurgeons, general surgeons, plastic surgeons, oncologists, and radiation oncologists working together to ensure patients receive personalized specialty care and an optimal treatment outcome.