Awake Language and Motor Mapping

Contact Information

(608) 263-8500
(800) 323-8942

The UW Health Brain Tumor Center in Madison, Wisconsin provides comprehensive treatment for patients with brain tumors. Working in concert with the UW Carbone Cancer Center, our multidisciplinary team sees more than 1,200 brain tumor patients annually with common as well as rare brain cancers.


What is language and motor mapping?


During language and motor mapping, a surgeon maps out the brain of a patient to identify where certain functions take place. Some of the functions they look for include what controls movement, sensation, language and understanding of communication.


Why do patients need to be awake?


Patients remain awake during the procedure so the surgeon is able to test where language and motor functions are located. Patients are under general anesthesia for the entire procedure, except during the mapping.


Why map the brain?


Brain mapping ensures the least amount of disruption to the brain when removing the tumor. Mapping the brain allows the surgeon to have guidance on which pathways will be the least disruptive to the patient's language and function.