What is Acoustic Neuroma?
Have you been told that you have an acoustic neuroma? This is a type of benign, but still present, tumor that is growing on the main nerve that leads from a person’s inner ear to their brain. This is a somewhat uncommon type of tumor that is noncancerous. Generally, it is very slow growing. However, this tumor is an important one to uncover and to take steps to correct whenever possible. That is because it can impact the branches of this nerve that directly impact a person’s sense of balance and his or her ability to hear.
It can also create pressure, which can lead to ringing in the eyes, unsteadiness on your feet and even hearing loss.
Symptoms of Acoustic Neuromas
There are various symptoms of this condition and sometimes they are hard to detect at first. These generally develop from the direct effects of the pressing of the tumor on this nerve. It also can press on various brain structures, the blood vessels nearby, or other nerves. All of this leads to symptoms, but, depending on the location, size, and overall structure of the tumor, symptoms will range widely from one person to the next. The most common include:
- Hearing loss, this often worsens over time but can be sudden as well.
- Hearing loss that seems to be more prominent on one side over the other
- Ringing in the ear that is impacted
- Unsteadiness or a loss of balance
- Facial numbness
- In some cases, weakness in the facial muscles
If you have any of these types of symptoms, it is best to turn to your doctor for a better understanding of your overall health.
In some cases, treatments for this condition involve nothing more than just monitoring it because it grows so slowly and may not create symptoms initially. I other cases, a type of stereotactic radiosurgery may be used to treat a very large tumor, which will stop its growth and preserve your facial function. Surgical removal is an option in some cases. There are various options available to doctors in removing these specific tumors but every case is very different.
There are risks to having an acoustic neuromas. If you think you may have one, it is wise to schedule a consultation with your ENT in New York right away to discuss what your symptoms are and what treatments may be right for you.
Call Dr. Michael Burnett at 212-867-4813 to schedule a consultation.