An acoustic neuroma (more accurately called a vestibular schwannoma, also known as an acoustic tumour) is a benign growth that arises from the hearing and balance nerve. The early symptoms of an acoustic neuroma are often subtle. Many people attribute the symptoms to normal changes of aging, so it may be a while before the condition is diagnosed.The first symptom is usually a gradual loss of hearing in one ear, often accompanied by ringing in the ear (tinnitus) or a feeling of fullness in the ear. Less commonly, acoustic neuromas may cause sudden hearing loss.
Treatment: Surgery for acoustic neuromas may involve removing all or part of the tumor.There are three main surgical approaches for removing an acoustic neuroma· Translabyrinthine, which involves making an incision behind the ear and removing the bone behind the ear and some of the middle ear. This procedure is used for tumors larger than 3 centimeters. The upside of this approach is that it allows the surgeon to see an important cranial nerve (the facial nerve) clearly before removing the tumor. The downside of this technique is that it results in permanent hearing loss.
Epidemiology:· each year, 1 in 2,45,015 people develops · acoustic neuromaacoustic neuromas are caused by a genetic malfunction involving chromosome 22 · unilateral acoustic neuromas (affecting only one ear)