I am a 42 year old woman who was diagnozed with an AN 12 mm by 5 mm this past Monday. The ENT recommended Middle Fossa, and mentioned that radiation therapy is an option, but that it can cause hearing issues, facial issues, and potentially cancer, and worse of all, it can alter the tumor such that microsurgery may not be as successful later on if needed.
At that point I was pretty much resigned to having brain surgery, and could imagine my brain exposed to light and air during surgery (a funny image still in my head right now). I was mentally pumping myself up for that. My gut though said keep researching options anyway, and I've been on this forum many many hours since Monday, looking at people's blogs on surgery at House, reading posts over and over, reading medical articles, etc. It dawned on me that radiation therapy is not such a bad option for my situation after looking at the info. In fact, here is an interesting survey from U of Pittsburgh dating from 2002 I believe:http://www.acousticneuroma.neurosurgery.pitt.edu/docsurvey.html
there is also this link comparing resecting and radiosurgery:http://www.acousticneuroma.neurosurgery.pitt.edu/or.html
In any event, the links suggests that MOST neurosurgeons, if they had a small/medium sized tumor, would pick radiosurgery over microsurgery, that quality of life after radiosurgery is substantially better than after microsurgery, and that other complications after radiosurgery have such a low incidence that there is not even a comparison with microsurgery. Microsurgery however i hear is best for larger tumors that are causing sumptoms that hte patient needs to address.
So now, I am totally confused. Help me understand this jumble of information.
If you had microsurgery, why did you opt for it? If I have microsurgery, I will go to House. I know that much.
If you had radiosurgery, why did you opt for that, and what type did you get? Do you recommend CyberKnife, Gamma Knife, or the other ones the names of which I don't even remember now ... What factors influenced your decision on type of radiosurgery?
Also, does anyone know the following:
* the name and contact info of a doctor/center MOST experiened with Gamma Knife?
* same as above for CyberKnife for MOST experienced?
* same as above for the other types of radiosurgery I don't remember (sorry...) for MOST experienced?
Thank you So much.
By the way, I have been scared *%#&less since Monday, but am taking it one day at a time.
Thank you all.