Acoustic neuromas are fairly rare with less than 20,000 cases per year.  While this tumor is non-cancerous/benign, it can still cause serious issues to the body. It is important to make sure that all acoustic neuromas are treated promptly and safely. 

What is an Acoustic Neuroma? 

An acoustic neuroma, or vestibular schwannoma, is a type of non-cancerous tumor that forms on the main vestibular nerve which leads from the inner ear to the brain. Oftentimes, this tumor remains small but in rare cases, it can expand and interact with the brain. Due to the pressure it applies to the nerve it sits on, acoustic neuromas can cause hearing issues and also cause issues maintaining balance. Some common symptoms experienced by acoustic neuroma patients include:

  • A ringing of the ear on the same side as the tumor
  • Unsteadiness when it comes to movement
  • Headaches
  • Clumsy walking
  • Mental confusion
  • Hearing loss on one side
  • The inability to hear high-frequency sounds
  • Facial numbness, tingling, or facial paralysis
  • A full feeling in the ear

If you have experienced any of these symptoms, you should seek medical attention immediately. It is best to have a medical professional take a look at your symptoms and help you to understand what you’ve been experiencing. 

How Do Acoustic Neuromas Develop?

There are a variety of ways that a person can develop an acoustic neuroma. Some of the most common ways include having a consistent exposure to loud noises and undergoing face or neck radiation. If possible, it is suggested that those who experience either of those common development traits limit their exposure to those triggering actions. Other people may develop acoustic neuromas due to their inherited genetics. 

What Does Acoustic Neuroma Treatment Look Like?

Acoustic neuroma treatment can be case/patient specific. Before a treatment plan can be discussed, your doctor will likely perform tests including MRI and/or CT scans so that they can better understand the nature of your tumor and figure out how to best treat it. The three most common treatment avenues are:

  • Observation
  • Surgery
  • Radiation

A doctor will closely examine your case and may help you decide on which treatment is appropriate for you. 

Does Frequent Cell Phone Use Cause Acoustic Neuromas? 

Clinical studies have shown that there is no direct correlation between avid cell phone use and the development of acoustic neuromas. Over the years as cell phone usage has increased, the number of acoustic neuroma developments has stayed relatively the same. Though there could be an elevated risk of developing an acoustic neuroma on the side of the head that a cell phone is held to, the likelihood of actually developing the tumor remains quite low.

The Radiology Clinic:

If your doctor requests imaging to evaluate your symptoms, please contact The Radiology Clinic in Rockville, MD, at 301-217-0500 to schedule your imaging study.  The board certified fellowship trained neuroradiologists at The Radiology Clinic will provide timely, accurate imaging and diagnoses to help you get treatment quickly and effectively.