Neuro-Oncology

The Neuro-Oncology program at UNM’s Comprehensive Cancer Center cares for people with brain and spinal tumors. Whether the tumors start in the brain or spinal cord, or whether they spread to these areas, our team provides the most advanced care from diagnosis through treatment and beyond.

Singers, dancers, mathematicians — my job is to preserve that function. My goal is to remove as much of the tumor as possible, but never compromise their unique function. Careful mapping of the tumor allows us to remove as much of the tumor as possible. I’m going to do that. The last thing I want to do is take away the mental faculty that is most important to [my patients].

– M. Omar Chohan, MD

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Meet the Team

Medical Oncologists

Treat tumors of the entire nervous system using medical treatments such as chemotherapy, targeted therapy and immune therapy. With special training in brain and spine tumors, our Medical Oncologists manage clinical trials that include the newest targeted therapies and immunotherapies.

Surgical Oncologists

At UNM, our surgeons can treat some of the most complex and difficult brain tumors. Our team uses brain mapping and awake brain surgery to preserve memory, movement and speech. Using “intraoperative fluoroscopy,” our surgeons mark tumor cells with a bright color. They can then safely remove as much of the tumor as possible without disturbing normal brain cells. Our team also offers several new and advanced procedures for spinal cord tumors: decompression and spinal column stabilization, percutaneous cement augmentation, and instrumentation to relieve pain from cancer tumors in the spine.

Our team offers comprehensive multidisciplinary neuro-oncology care. Every team member takes part in creating a unique treatment plan tailored to each patient’s needs. This approach to care ensures that every patient receives the most advanced and best treatment. And every member of our team stays updated on each patient’s care throughout treatment.

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Radiation Oncologists

Use different methods to kill brain and spinal tumors that can’t be removed with surgery. The methods they use include stereotactic radiosurgery and external beam radiation. These methods focus a radiation beam very sharply on the tumor but move the beam to avoid damaging healthy brain and spinal nerve cells.

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Elizabeth
Madresh, CNP

Midlevel Providers

May perform certain medical procedures, give medications or injections, take medical histories, or perform medical exams under the guidance of a physician.