Thanks, bonnieD, for making your first post on the ANA Forums!
It is very wise for you to have a few consults. Dr. Friedman at UCSD has a great reputation, but, nonetheless, it is good to seek additional opinions. Sometimes things are not as black and white as they might seem.
One point I want to make is that everyone's acoustic neuroma journey is different, even though we share many things in common.
So, for one person, based on the size and location of their tumor and their age, surgery may be the best option. For another person, radiation is the best option. For a third person, monitoring the tumor and waiting is the best option. The risks can also vary from person to person, again depending upon the tumor's size and location and the patient's age. So, we can never say surgery is the best option for everyone or radiation is the best option for everyone or watching and waiting is the best option for everyone. All we can do is gather the best medical advice we can from various sources and make the decision on what is best for us on our particular AN journey.
I state this, bonnieD, just because there are a lot of newly diagnosed people who come to the Forums, and they can read where someone had a certain treatment and think that because it was good for the poster that it would be good for them, too. Maybe they read a post that surgery was the best option, so they decide to have surgery as well. And yet, for that person, maybe their tumor was much smaller and could have been treated successfully by radiation with far fewer risks. But they chose to have surgery and now have facial paralysis and constant headaches after their surgery. Instead of a quick recovery, it took them several months before they could return to work. All I am saying is that each person, weighing the risks and benefits of all the treatment options with valid input from the top specialists in the country can help each individual make the decision of what is best for them in their particular situation.
I do wish you the very best in your upcoming surgery! Please keep us posted on how the other consults go and how you do in your surgery! Thanks again for sharing your story!