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A meningioma is a slow-growing tumor that forms in the meninges, the 3 layers of tissue that cover the brain and spinal cord. Meningiomas are primary tumors, meaning they develop in the brain and spinal cord’s protective tissue rather than spreading from elsewhere in the body. Most meningiomas are benign (not cancerous).
Meningiomas are the most common type of brain tumor, and may sit for years before a doctor discovers them. While they often do not cause problems, some require treatment.
You do not always need immediate treatment for a meningioma. A small, slow-growing tumor that does not cause symptoms may not require treatment. If you and your doctor decide to pursue “active surveillance,” your doctor will periodically do a brain scan to evaluate the meningioma and look for signs of growth.
If the meningioma progresses and needs treatment, our doctors use 2 main approaches: surgery and radiation therapy. We often recommend a combination of these treatments, based on the specific details discovered during diagnosis. You and your doctor work together to identify the best option for you, based on the location of the tumor and its aggressiveness.
What to Expect
As you and your family prepare for your care at Stanford, you’ll likely have many questions. We are here to help you in any way we can and to partner with you before, during and after treatment.
Clinical trials are research studies that evaluate a new medical approach, device, drug, or other treatment. As a Stanford Health Care patient, you may have access to the latest, advanced clinical trials.
Open trials refer to studies currently accepting participants. Closed trials are not currently enrolling, but may open in the future.