Greetings. I am glad you are here, but not how you got here. I have spent the past 6 days reading just about everything written on this message board. There are some truly amazing people who are willing to help newbies over and over again as they come to grips with the tornado that was a tumor diagnosis. Now, I am one.
42 years old, with a loving wife, and Dennis the Menace full throttle 5 year old son. I coach little league football (7 seasons) and I am very active. It took basically from July of last year until the MRI last Thursday to reveal a 1cm AN. Test at the Otolaryngologist showed I had 35-40% hearing loss in my right ear and 40% balance lost on my right side, but my brain was working and correcting it to 100%. That would explain why I can still play trampoline football with my son and also explain why I am so fatigued all the time. Brain working overtime.
Now, in terms of AN, mine is a phase one baby. I have high pitched tinnitus that is bothersome, and the hearing part takes constant vigilance, but so far, other than fatigue, I am ok but mentally freaked out it happened. (Like every single person this happens to).
Now, because of size, I could do any of the big 3. WW, surgery, radiation.
The way I am figuring it is this.
1) These things don't improve with age. Any upward growth does more damage not less. Watch and Wait. Not likely.
2) I am 100% insured and have the full support of a great work environment to do what I need to do. Take advantage of good situations when you have them, for they don't always last.
3) Radiation has no appeal to me at my age or for that matter any age. I have lots of reasons, add the myths or take them out, but no radiation beams to the head.
4) Surgery. I will be honest. The recovery phase seems horrible. Just flat out horrible. And CFS and the other side effects. Scary, scary. But, I want it out. Not anywhere but out. Out as in Not in. I think trying to keep my hearing is a nice goal, and would like the two options in surgery that do that.
So, I know people of great wisdom here say, take your time, think this through, and I just feel I know what I should do now. Not because of arrogance, but knowing myself as I do, this seems like the only choice that fits me. And I know it now.
Now, I spoke with Dr. Ricardo Cristobal, MD, PhD here in Fort Worth. Seems experienced, thoughtful, and able. Is he the guy for me? Not sure, but if anyone has any experience in the DFW Texas area, please let me know.
I hope I am not sounding like I am just reacting without thinking. That's all I have been doing. But this AN is like an unwanted guest who is eating all my chocolate ice cream without asking and I want him out of the house.
In closing, I want to thank so many people for taking the time to write about their experiences and feelings dealing with this strange affliction. It was such a relief to find it amongst the large amounts of internet trash floating around.
All the best,