Wednesday, July 26, 2023

How is acoustic neuroma treated?

 An acoustic neuroma, also known as a vestibular schwannoma, is a noncancerous tumor that develops on the nerve that connects the ear to the brain

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 Researchers do not know why acoustic neuromas form. Most of the time, the tumors arise spontaneously, with no known cause or reason
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Symptoms

The most common symptom of an acoustic neuroma is hearing loss in one ear (unilateral), which happens to about 90% of people who have an acoustic neuroma
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 Other symptoms that may occur in the early stages include ringing in the ears (tinnitus), dizziness, and difficulty with balance
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 Symptoms of acoustic neuromas can mimic symptoms of other ear problems, making it challenging to diagnose an acoustic neuroma
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Diagnosis

To diagnose an acoustic neuroma, your healthcare provider will ask you about your symptoms and perform a physical exam. You will also have a series of hearing and balance tests and scans, which may include an audiogram to check hearing ability and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to visualize the tumor
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Treatment

There are three treatment approaches for acoustic neuroma: monitoring, surgery, or radiation therapy
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 The choice of treatment depends on the size and growth speed of the acoustic neuroma, severity of the patient's symptoms, and overall age and health of the patient
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  • Monitoring: If you have a small acoustic neuroma that isn't growing or is growing slowly and causes few or no signs or symptoms, you and your doctor may decide to monitor it
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  • Surgery: Surgery to remove the tumor is a common treatment for acoustic neuroma
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     There are three main surgical approaches to remove an acoustic neuroma: the retrosigmoid, middle fossa, and the translabyrinthine approach
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  • Radiation therapy: There are several types of radiation therapy used to treat acoustic neuroma, including stereotactic radiosurgery, which is often used if the tumor is small, you are an older adult, or you cannot tolerate surgery for health reasons
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Outcomes are generally good, whether treatment involves stereotactic radiosurgery or surgical removal of the acoustic neuroma
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 However, hearing loss can persist after treatment, and patients can experience significant anxiety after a tumor diagnosis
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If you notice any hearing changes, talk to your healthcare provider. Early diagnosis offers the best opportunity for successful treatment
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Citations:
[1] https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diseases/16400-acoustic-neuroma
[2] https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/acoustic-neuroma/diagnosis-treatment/drc-20356132
[3] https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/acoustic-neuroma/symptoms-causes/syc-20356127
[4] https://www.mayoclinic.org/medical-professionals/neurology-neurosurgery/news/acoustic-neuroma-treatment-and-quality-of-life/mac-20429300
[5] https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/conditions-and-diseases/brain-tumor/vestibular-schwannoma
[6] https://www.mdanderson.org/cancer-types/acoustic-neuroma/acoustic-neuroma-treatment.html
[7] https://www.nidcd.nih.gov/health/vestibular-schwannoma-acoustic-neuroma-and-neurofibromatosis
[8] https://www.brighamandwomens.org/neurosurgery/brain-tumors/acoustic-neuroma
[9] https://rarediseases.org/rare-diseases/acoustic-neuroma/
[10] https://www.aaroncohen-gadol.com/patients/acoustic-neuromas/treatment/surgery
[11] https://medlineplus.gov/acousticneuroma.html
[12] https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/acoustic-neuroma/

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