Author Topic: Was "Watch and Wait" what?  (Read 2557 times)


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Was "Watch and Wait" what?
« on: April 29, 2011, 12:55:15 pm »
I am completely new at this!  I normally try to go these things alone but am a little wigged out at this point.  I was "watch and wait" but the tumor has nearly double in size in the past 2 years so my Dr. fells we need to do something now. I was comfortable on on the W&W list. Now I have questions.
1) Is radiation the way to go
2) IF so, does it get worse before it gets better
3) I'm at UT Southwestern in Dallas that the best in this area (I'm very comfortable with the dr)

« Last Edit: April 29, 2011, 03:12:52 pm by Jim Scott »
1.7 x 1 x .7  facial schwannoma
Gamma Knife treatment - 7-12-11
Dallas, Texas -- UT Southwestern

Jim Scott

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Re: Was "Watch and Wait" what?
« Reply #1 on: April 29, 2011, 03:28:42 pm »
Hi, Brucea - and welcome.

I'm sorry you have to deal with an acoustic neuroma but glad that you decided not to go it alone - and found the ANA website discussion forums.

It would be helpful if we knew the size of your AN.  Radiation is not usually feasible on tumors larger than 3 cm (due to swelling issues).  However, if you're a candidate for radiation, there are 3 options; GammaKnife, Cyberknife and FSR.  Lots of information on these treatments is available on this website and others on the internet.  As you know, radiation is non-invasive (no cutting) and has a quicker recovery time-frame, although it still carries some inherent risks.  Your doctor will likely make a recommendation on treatment but, of course, the final decision is yours, alone.   We'll try to help and I can guarantee that you'll have the support of the folks on these forums, whatever your treatment decision.

4.5 cm AN diagnosed 5/06.  Retrosigmoid surgery 6/06.  Follow-up FSR completed 10/06.  Tumor shrinkage & necrosis noted on last MRI.  Life is good. 

Life is not the way it's supposed to be. It's the way it is.  The way we cope with it is what makes the difference.


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Re: Was "Watch and Wait" what?
« Reply #2 on: April 29, 2011, 06:51:07 pm »
It does sound like time to seek treatment, but whether you decide on radiation or surgery is a personal choice that you should make after investigating both these options.

As Jim said, the size of your AN - and the location - will pretty much dictate whether radiation is an option for you. 

You should contact the ANA and ask them for their informational brochures; you'll find them very helpful.

I don't know any docs in your area (I'm from Illinois), but I've heard good things about Dr. Vrabec in Houston.

Retrosig 5/31/07 Drs. Battista & Kazan (Hinsdale, Illinois)
Left AN 3.0 cm (1.5 cm @ diagnosis 6 wks prior) SSD. BAHA implant 3/4/08 (Dr. Battista) Divino 6/4/08  BP100 4/2010 BAHA 5 8/2015

I don't actually "make" trouble..just kind of attract it, fine tune it, and apply it in new and exciting ways