I underwent microsurgery by Dr. Friedman and Dr. Schwartz at the Univ. of Calif. at San Diego Hospital on September 18, 2018. I am 5 weeks post-surgery and have the following experience:
1) I had tinnitus in 2006 after my daughter was born and was diagnostic left AN in 2007, 8mmX6mm with excellent hearing and no other symptom. My doctor referred to Dr. Harrison who is the doctor’s doctor in UCSD. With his input I decided to wait and watch. I like my life style that time and also hope it stopped growing.
2) I did MRI and hearing test for 11 years and tutor grew very slow, about 0.5mm per year. My hearing is getting worse and little balance hiccups.
3) In 2018 I noticed my hearing dropped a lot and hearing test showed it was poor with 45% word reorganization. I went to see Dr. Harrison and he told me I had to do something because the tumor as growing, but no hurry to make decision. He strongly recommended Dr. Schwartz, he was a genesis and just move to UCSD last Oct. I heard Dr. Schwartz/Fredman when they were in House Clinic since 10 years ago.
4) We moved to La Jolla this year and maybe the closest patient to UCSD Health center, just 10 minutes away. Both doctors are very positive when my hubby and I asked many questions, it encouraged me to move forward with them. Dr. Fredman introduced his program manager Kris Siwek to me. Kris is AN patient and her story inspired me. Then I decided to do surgery with Dr Schwartz/Fredman. Another reason is that my parents are longevity, I am 49 and need think about 40 to 50 years more.
5) I went to hospital with my husband at 7:30am on 9/18. My surgery lasted five hours. (That's five hours from the time they put me under until I awoke in the ICU. I don't know how long the actual procedure lasted.) I had a little memory and was sent to MRI or CT Scan after surgery.
6) When I wake up, I've had facial weakness, double vision, a little balance issue and I've had no CSF leak. Dr. Schwartz told me tumor 100% removed and has hearing signal from device.
7) I stay in ICU for 2 days although I could transfer to regular room, because regular room was tight. ICU room in UCSD looks like 5 star hotel, big, bright with green balcony. The life in ICU was tough and nausea, vomit if without medicine. I lost my appetite following surgery and my weight dropped 8 pounds.
I was back home after 2 night ICU, then back to see Dr. in one week. First I did hearing test, I remember I could hear sound in the beginning during hearing test, not very clean and increased volume, then I totally lost hearing
. I talked with both Dr. if we should not do hearing test in very short time. Dr. Schwartz said it was strange he got signal by device during surgery. Anyway I lost valid left hearing although it was not good before surgery.
9) In the 3rd week my left eye lip could not close well like before and dry eye had tears. I had to call in and see Dr. Fredman. He gave me prescription medicine to reduce swelling and it worked well. The facial weakness improved with medicine help, almost like normal my friends told me. Actually I notice my son passed cold virus to me and may cause facial nerve worse.
10) I am getting better and better and my energy back 90%, will go to gym next week.
11) Once a week see PT for balance and facial exercise. Will recheck MRI one year later. Will see Dr. Schwartz/Fredman for follow up app soon.
12) After recovery we need figure out how to help the left hearing loss. Baha or Hearing Aid? It is tough to hear if there is noisy background such as party.
I cannot say enough positive things about my surgeons, Marc Schwartz and Rich Friedman, and their team. In addition to being highly skilled and experienced, they are personable, affable, humble, and likable. I am absolutely so luck to live in La Jolla nearby UCSD and will continue to take advantage to follow up. Dr. Schwartz /Friedman are outstanding and have my highest recommendations.
I like to share my experience and see if my input can help others. English is my second language, please forgive my mistake.
I am thankful to my husband, son, daughter and my friends who support me to pass this tough time. Life is good though.
- 13 x 8 mm tumor, 5/2018
- tinnitus, single-sided hearing loss
- retrosig surgery Schwartz & Friedman UCSD 9/18
- 100% of tumor removed, left hearing loss
- 8 x 6 mm left AN, diagnosed 2006, W&W