Looking for information on pediatric neurosurgery for children with hydrocephalus? Read on to learn more about this type of treatment. Hydrocephalus is a brain condition that almost always requires neurosurgery. When this condition affects a pediatric patient, it is especially concerning because the build-up of fluid creates an immense amount of pressure on the brain.…
What Is an Acoustic Neuroma?
An acoustic neuroma is a medical term referring to a condition in the brain. Typically, a neurosurgeon or neurologist will be the point of contact when managing or treating this condition, as they are both skilled with all things relating to the brain. A neurosurgeon would be responsible for the treatment of an acoustic neuroma, but a neurologist may also be a part of the patient's medical team.
An overview of acoustic neuromas
Below is an overview of acoustic neuromas, including what they are and everything that there is to know about the condition.
What is an acoustic neuroma?
An acoustic neuroma is a tumor in the brain that is noncancerous. It is typically slow-growing and forms on the main nerve that connects the inner ear to the brain.
In most cases, acoustic neuromas do not grow at all or if they do, the rate is extremely slow. This means that it is considered low in terms of risk. Of course, there are rare instances where acoustic neuromas can grow rapidly leading to the interference of vital brain functions. In these cases, neurosurgeons may want to take immediate action in order to stop the growth or completely rid the brain of the acoustic neuroma.
Symptoms and signs
Because acoustic neuromas do not grow at a quick rate, it can be easy to miss the warning signs. It is actually quite common for individuals to have an acoustic neuroma for quite some time and not even know it because of the lack of symptoms due to the slow growth rate. Below are some of the most common symptoms associated with this condition:
- Ringing in the ear that is affected
- Partial or complete loss of hearing in the affected ear
- Dizziness or loss of balance on a regular basis
- Facial numbing or weakness
Each individual may experience different symptoms, but those that are listed above are the most common and should be taken to a specialist right away if noticed.
Once any symptoms are reported to a neurologist or neurosurgeon, one should expect to undergo a series of tests to determine whether an acoustic neuroma is indeed present. Most commonly, the tests that will be performed will include an MRI, CT scan, and physical examinations.
Typically, acoustic neuromas are observed and monitored on a frequent basis to ensure that growth does not take place. However, if treatment is necessary, it is usually recommended to undergo surgery to remove the tumor or radiation therapy to shrink it.
It is key to know that if hearing loss does occur due to an acoustic neuroma, surgery will not be able to reverse this. Loss of hearing is unfortunately permanent, which can be discouraging. However, on the bright side, surgery can help to improve loss of balance and other related symptoms.
As far as radiation goes, for acoustic neuromas, it is recommended to undergo stereotactic radiosurgery, which produces precise radioactive waves to the affected tissue, without harming the surrounding areas. With this form of treatment, it is good to know that the goal is not to remove the acoustic neuroma but to stop the growth, or at least slow it down.
In some cases, neurosurgeons may also recommend a few sessions of radiation after the surgery. This ensures that no remnants of the tumor are left behind.
The bottom line
To find out more about acoustic neuromas or to get scheduled for an appointment, contact our clinic today.
Check out what others are saying about our dental services on Yelp: Acoustic Neuroma in Phoenix, AZ.
When it comes to treating spinal tumor, a neurosurgeon will need to know the type of spinal tumor, as well as the stage of the tumor. Vertebral column tumors, intradural-extramedullary tumors and intramedullary tumors are three common types of spinal tumors that people can be diagnosed with.Want to understand more about a spinal tumor? According…
Facial paralysis does not always require treatment. Sometimes, doctors will recommend continuous monitoring of the condition. For example, facial paralysis caused by Bell’s Palsy will usually go away in six months. The treatments designed to treat this condition depend on the patient’s age, the cause of the paralysis, the severity of the paralysis, and the…
As it is, acoustic neuroma should not be fatal. This non-cancerous and slow-growing tumor develops in the vestibular nerve from the inner ear to the brain. It usually develops from the Schwann cells that cover the main nerve and grows slowly or sometimes, not at all. However, on the rare occasion that the tumor grows…