Neurinoma of the spine: causes, symptoms, diagnosis and treatment
Neurinoma of the spine is one of the most common benign tumor in this area. A characteristic feature of the development of neuromas is its location, as it always develops close to the roots of the spinal cord. Relatively recently, it was found that the tumor cells originate from Schwann cells of the myeloid sheath of radicular nerves, and these cells initially have a pathological structure, which further leads to uncontrolled division. Neuromas can develop not only in spinal roots, but also affect other nerves, including the auditory nerve.
Causes and pathogenesis of the development of neuromas
This benign tumor is a dense formation of incorrect or oval, which is surrounded by a dense fibrous sheath, or connective tissue. Despite the fact that the neuroma is a benign tumor, it is not necessary to consider it completely safe, because after a certain period of time, this tumor can be malignant, that is cancerous.
There are the following factors that provoke the development of neuromas of the spine:
- genetic predisposition;
- the harmful effects of ionizing radiation;
- traumatic nerve damage.
The tumor develops very slowly, but after some time it can exit through the intervertebral openings outside of the spine. The dimensions of this benign tumor can vary greatly from 2-3 grams to several kilograms. Considering the tumor site, we can distinguish 3 main types of neuromas:
- neurinoma of the cervical spine;
- neurinoma of the thoracic spine;
- neuroma of the lumbar spine.
Not always there is a single education, it is possible the emergence of multiple neuromas on the entire length of the spine, but most frequently these tumors appear in the cervical and thoracic spine.
Neuroma can occur in people of any age, including infants. Statistics show that most often the tumor of the cervical spine, as well as neuroma in the thoracic spine, is more often seen in older women.
Symptomatic manifestations in the spinal cord
It is worth noting that in the early stages of the disease usually does not manifest severe symptoms. Many people are able to live life, even assuming that they have in the spine is of a small size benign tumor that can be potentially dangerous.
Such a favorable development of the tumor is possible only in case, if no complications of the disease, and the tumor is very small. The development of tumor and increase in size over time, can manifest a number of symptoms, which in most cases are associated with radicular syndrome, as the tumor begins to put pressure on healthy nerve tissue. The increase of the tumor and the complications that usually accompany the following symptoms:
- reduction in motor activity;
- sharp pain due to pinched nerve roots, radiating to shoulders, neck, internal organs and muscles;
- muscle weakness;
- pathological the violation of the sensitivity of different areas;
- numbness below the affected area;
- disruption in the urogenital system;
- involuntary acts of urination and defecation.
In very advanced cases may develop paralysis, not only of the lower limbs, and entire body. Common complications the growth of this benign tumors are diseases of the bones. Typically, the first affected vertebrae and the intervertebral disk, which are adjacent to the tumor, where there is a strong strain due to constant pressure from the tumors. In addition, many people suffering from neuromas, severe muscle atrophy, mainly in the legs.
The severity of symptomatic manifestations depends on the shape of the tumor, its size and other pathological and morphological features of its structure and location.
How is diagnosis and treatment
Specifics of treatment are largely depends at what stage is the disease. In most cases, benign tumours are diagnosed only after they reach a certain size and start to bring the patient discomfort. So the only way to get this tumor is surgery. However, in some cases, treatment of neuroma with conservative means.
Before you choose the best treatment, a doctor must conduct a number of specific studies to identify not only the location and size of the tumor, but also its characteristics, that is, find out whether it is benign or there are signs of degeneration into malignant.
As a rule, to confirm the diagnosis and identify ways of treating doctors previously carried out such tests as:
- computed tomography;
- magnetic resonance imaging;
Radiography is the simplest and most accessible method of researching structures of the spine. Usually, radiography is the beginning of a diagnosis, as it allows not only to determine the presence of problems, but also prevent certain degenerative diseases that may cause similar symptoms. However, this study may not be as computer tomography gives the best visualization.
Various diagnostic methods allow to obtain more information about the specific location of the tumor, its size, and the presence of damage to the adjacent tissues of the spine.
After having carried out a complete diagnosis, treatment. Methods of treatment determined by the physician. There are three basic methods of influence on the neuroma:
As a rule, a conservative approach is preferred when a person has a serious disease, which may worsen due to the operational methods of influence. Conservative treatment involves the occupation of a doctor waiting with a constant monitoring of the patient’s condition. Neuromas grow very slowly, so as not to harm the patient, it is better not to treat more invasive and traumatic to the body methods. Surgical treatment can remove the tumor partially or completely. Radiosurgery is used when Department of tumor impossible because of her strong splice with the tissues of the spinal cord. This method involves irradiation, which is a strong stress for the body.