Skip to main content

Types of tumors

  • Tumors of the brain can be malignant (cancerous) or benign (non-cancerous). Even benign tumors can cause serious problems since they can press against or damage brain tissue or the spine as they grow. 

    What is a brain tumor?

    Healthy cells that make up brain tissue grow, divide and replace themselves in an orderly way. Sometimes cells lose their ability to limit and direct their growth. When too much tissue forms, a brain tumor develops. The exact mechanism behind why this occurs is unknown, but many of the Givens Brain Tumor Center research studies focus on better understanding why brain tumors develop. 

    Brain tumors have different patterns and treatments in adults and children.

    A brain tumor can be cancerous (malignant) or be non-cancerous (benign). Even a benign tumor in the brain or spine is a serious problem because it can damage the central nervous system as it grows and increases brain pressure.

    What is a metastatic brain tumor?

    metastatic brain tumor is cancer that has traveled into the brain from another part of the body.

    Many types of cancer can cause a metastatic brain tumor. Cancer commonly spreads to the brain from the lungs, breast, kidneys or skin (melanoma). Metastatic brain tumors are more common in adults than in children.

    We care for patients with tumors and conditions that include:

    • meningiomas
    • glioblastoma (WHO grade IV)
    • infiltrating gliomas (WHO grade II or III)
    • anaplastic gliomas (WHO grade III or IV), such as anaplastic oligodendroglioma or astrocytoma
    • low grade gliomas (WHO grade II), such as oligodendroglioma or astrocytoma
    • craniopharyngioma
    • chondrosarcomas
    • epidermoids
    • glomus tumors
    • cholesterol granulomas
    • chordomas
    • problems pertaining to the facial nerve
    • acoustic neuromas

    Our neurosurgeons care for patients with tumors and conditions that include:

    • pituitary adenomas
    • meningocele
    • spinal cord tumors 

  • Contact us


    Find us

    Givens Brain Tumor Center
    Abbott Northwestern Hospital Neuroscience Institute
    Suite 304
    800 East 28th Street
    Minneapolis, MN 55407