Brain Tumor

A brain tumor is an abnormal growth of a person’s own cells inside the skull or cranium. There are many types of primary brain tumors depending on which cells they come from. Primary brain tumors come from an abnormal growth of brain cells including the nerve cells (neurons), glial cells (supporting cells of neurons), pituitary cells (hormone-secreting cells) and the meninges (the covering of the brain). It is important to differentiate between primary brain tumors and metastasis of a cancer to the brain, which is spread of cancer cells to the brain from a cancer that arises outside of the brain, such as breast cancer or lung cancer. 

There are over 50 different types of brain tumors. Some are slow growing and are benign, also called low-grade brain tumors, while others grow faster and are called high-grade or malignant brain tumors. The two most common primary brain tumors in adults are high-grade gliomas and meningiomas. 

Programs + Services


Neurosurgery

Tufts Children's Hospital's Pediatric Neurosurgery Division in Boston uses the latest neurosurgical methods to treat diseases of the nervous system in children.
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Radiation Oncology

The Department of Radiation Oncology offers comprehensive therapeutic services for pediatric patients with all types of malignant diseases.
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Doctors + Care Team

Jason Law, MD

Jason Law, MD

Accepting New Patients

Title(s): Chief, Pediatric Hematology Oncology; Site Principal Investigator, Children’s Oncology Group and Neuroblastoma Medulloblastoma Translational Research Consortium Trials; Director, Pediatric Bone Marrow Transplantation; Assistant Professor, Tufts University School of Medicine
Department(s): Pediatrics, Pediatric Hematology/Oncology
Appt. Phone: 617-636-5535
Fax #: 617-636-7738

Pediatric hematology, oncology, bone marrow transplant

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Blythe G.  Thomson, MD

Blythe G. Thomson, MD

Accepting New Patients

Title(s): Pediatric Hematologist/Oncologist
Department(s): Pediatrics, Pediatric Hematology/Oncology
Appt. Phone: 617-636-5535
Fax #: 617-636-7738

Pediatric Hematology/Oncology

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Carl B. Heilman, MD

Carl B. Heilman, MD

Accepting New Patients

Title(s): Neurosurgeon-in-Chief; Chairman of Neurosurgery; Professor, Tufts University School of Medicine
Department(s): Neurosurgery
Appt. Phone: 617-636-5860
Fax #: 617-636-7587

Meningiomas, acoustic neuromas, skull base surgery, pituitary surgery, Chiari surgery

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Cathy G. Rosenfield, MD

Cathy G. Rosenfield, MD

Accepting New Patients

Title(s): Co-Director, Tufts University School of Medicine Hematology Course; Associate Clinical Professor, Tufts University School of Medicine
Department(s): Pediatrics, Pediatric Hematology/Oncology
Appt. Phone: 617-636-5535
Fax #: 617-636-7738

Hemophilia and other bleeding disorders, prothrombotic disorders, sickle cell and other hemoglobinopathies, general hematology

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Hannah Fassel, MD

Hannah Fassel, MD

Accepting New Patients

Title(s): Hematologist/Oncologist; Assistant Professor, Tufts University School of Medicine
Department(s): Pediatrics, Hematology/Oncology
Appt. Phone: 978-937-6362.
Fax #:

Anemia, bleeding disorders, thrombosis, general hematology, and childhood cancers such as leukemia and lymphoma.

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Julian K. Wu, MD

Julian K. Wu, MD

Accepting New Patients

Title(s): Associate Chairman, Neurosurgery; Chief, Neurosurgical Oncology; Neurosurgery Residency Program Director; Professor, Tufts University School of Medicine
Department(s): Neurosurgery
Appt. Phone: 617-636-4500
Fax #: 617-636-7587

Neuro-oncology, Gamma Knife radiosurgery, meningiomas, pituitary tumors, gliomas, brain metastasis, trigeminal neuralgia

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Laura M.  Wiltsie, DO

Laura M. Wiltsie, DO

Accepting New Patients

Title(s): Pediatric Hematologist/Oncologist; Assistant Professor, Tufts University School of Medicine
Department(s): Pediatrics, Hematology/Oncology
Appt. Phone: 617-636-5535
Fax #: 617-636-7738

Solid tumors, brain tumors

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Tishi Shah, MD

Tishi Shah, MD

Accepting New Patients

Title(s): Attending Physician, Pediatric Hematology Oncology; Professor, Tufts University School of Medicine
Department(s): Pediatrics, Pediatric Hematology/Oncology
Appt. Phone: 617-636-5535
Fax #: 617-636-7738

Pediatric hematology oncology, vascular anomalies

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Tomo Tarui, MD

Tomo Tarui, MD

Accepting New Patients

Title(s): Director, Baby Neurology Program; Pediatric Neurologist; Assistant Professor, Tufts University School of Medicine
Department(s): Pediatrics, Pediatric Neurology
Appt. Phone: 617-636-5356
Fax #: 617-636-8375

Pediatric neurology, fetal neurology, neonatal neurology, neurological intensive care

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