What are peripheral nerve tumors?

Peripheral nerve tumors are growths or masses that occur on or near the nerves that connect the brain and spinal cord to other parts of the body. Peripheral nerve tumors can occur in any part of the body, and can affect the function of  the peripheral nerves.

What are the types of peripheral nerve tumors?

There are two types of peripheral nerve tumors:

Benign: These tumors are non-cancerous. The cause is usually unknown, but can be hereditary. Although these are non-cancerous, these tumors can still cause nerve damage and loss of muscle control, so surgical intervention may be required to remove the tumor. Symptoms include: pain, unusual lump, numbness, and tingling.

Malignant: These types of tumors are less common, but are considered cancerous, meaning they are easily spreadable if they go untreated. Malignant peripheral sheath tumors, or neurofibrosarcomas, occur in the protective lining of the peripheral nerves.  They  can occur anywhere in the body, but mostly occur in the deep tissues of the arms, legs, and trunk of the body. Symptoms of malignant sheath tumors include: lumps, pain, and weakness in the affected area.

What are my treatment options?

Treatment for these tumors include surgical intervention to remove the tumor. Radiation or chemotherapy may also be recommended for treatment of these tumors. A consultation with a neurosurgeon is recommended to discuss the right treatment plan for you.