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The Department of Neurosurgery at UNC Health collaborates with an expert multidisciplinary team of doctors focused on the treatment of both spinal columnUNC Health Spine Tumor Program and spinal cord tumors. Our team consists of internationally-recognized physicians who have made significant clinical and academic contributions to the field of spinal oncology.

Spinal tumors can be broken down into two broad categories: those that involve the vertebrae of the spine (primary and metastatic), and those that originate in the central and peripheral nervous system (spinal cord and nerves).

Our multidisciplinary team understands that being diagnosed with a spinal tumor comes with a great deal of anxiety and uncertainty. Once you have been diagnosed with a spinal tumor, we aim to expedite the initial consultation, workup, and ultimate treatment plan. We value nuanced discussions about treatment options with our patients and their families prior to any decisions being made. Our primary goal is to ensure that our patients are fully informed and understand every available treatment option for their spinal tumor.

Spine Tumor Program at UNC Health

The Spine Tumor Program at UNC Health is led by Dr. Michael Galgano, a fellowship-trained spinal oncology neurosurgeon. He specializes in the surgical resection of both spinal column and spinal cord tumors, as well as complex reconstruction techniques. Dr. Galgano has over 70 peer-reviewed publications and is a frequent guest lecturer for a variety of regional and national spine tumor forums. He is a recognized educator within the field of neurosurgery, and has published a large collection of videos detailing surgical techniques for the resection of spinal tumors.

Our expert team of spine tumor specialists meets several times each month to discuss optimal treatment strategies for individualized patient care during our multidisciplinary spine tumor board. Depending on the type of spine tumor being treated, management options may include biopsy, surgical resection, radiation treatment, administration of chemotherapeutic/immunotherapeutic agents, and interventional procedures such as radiofrequency ablation, and vertebroplasty/kyphoplasty.

The UNC Multidisciplinary Spine Tumor Program treats a variety of both benign and malignant spinal tumors:

Vertebral Column Tumors


  • Breast cancer
  • Lung cancer
  • Lymphoma
  • Multiple Myeloma
  • Prostate cancer
  • Renal cell cancer
  • Thyroid cancer
  • Colon cancer
  • Hepatocellular carcinoma
  • Melanoma


  • Aneursmal Bone Cyst
  • Chordoma
  • Chondrosarcoma
  • Chondromyxoid Fibroma
  • Hemangioma
  • Ewing’s Sarcoma
  • Osteochondroma
  • Osteosarcoma
  • Osteoid Osteoma
  • Osteoblastoma
  • Liposarcoma
  • Plasmacytoma
  • Synovial sarcoma
  • Undifferentiated pleomorphic sarcoma (UPS)

 Intradural Spinal Cord / Nerve Tumors

  • Astrocytoma
  • Ependymoma
  • Hemangioblastoma
  • Subependymoma
  • Glioma
  • Meningioma
  • Schwannoma
  • Neurofibroma
  • Paraganglioma
  • Ganglioglioma
  • Ganglioneuroma
  • Malignant Peripheral Nerve Sheath Tumor (MPNST)

Our Team 


For appointments, please call contact our Spine Surgery Nurse Coordinator, Katie McDaniel, MSN, RN at 984-974-6225.

Fax: 984-974-6740


UNC Hospitals Spine Center
1350 Raleigh Road, Second Floor
Chapel Hill, NC 27517

UNC Neurosurgery Clinic
Ambulatory Care Center
102 Mason Farm Road, Third Floor
Chapel Hill, NC 27599