Acoustic Neuromas & How We Treat Them
July 17, 2013
Acoustic Neuromas, also known as vestibular schwannoma, is a slow growing benign tumor on the balance nerve connecting the inner ear to the brain.
This is an uncommon condition, found in roughly 1 in 100,000 people. The most common symptoms include hearing loss, tinnitus (ringing in your ear), and vertigo (a feeling of imbalance). Because these symptoms are present with many conditions, it is important to see your doctor if they persist more than a few weeks. Your healthcare provider will make a referral to an ENT surgeon or to a Neurotologist if they feel you need further evaluation. Neurotology is a sub-specialty of otolaryngology (ears, nose, and throat) specializing in the neurological conditions of the ears and brainstem (also referred to as skull base surgery. if an acoustic neuroma is suspected). The neurotologist may conduct a clinical evaluation, hearing and balance tests and imaging studies, such as MRI, to make the diagnosis.
Once diagnosed, there are many options to consider:
Remember that acoustic neuromas are uncommon and the side effects are also associated with many other causes. Talk with your health care provider first and if you need more specialized care, the neurotologists can provide the expertise needed.