Frequent question: What is a neurofibroma tumor?

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What does a neurofibroma look like?

A neurofibroma is a tumor that grows along a nerve in any part of the body. Usually, they look like little rubber balls under the skin, or they may protrude from the skin. They’re usually benign (non-cancerous), and most often appear during puberty and adulthood.

Is neurofibroma a cancer?

Nerve tumors known as neurofibromas are benign or non-cancerous tumors that grow on nerves throughout the body. While they are seen in people without NF1, the presence of two or more of these tumors should raise the suspicion of NF1. There are three major types of neurofibroma: cutaneous, spinal and plexiform.

How do you treat neurofibroma?

There is no known treatment or cure for neurofibromatosis or schwannomatosis. Medication can be prescribed to help with pain. In some cases, growths may be removed surgically or reduced with radiation therapy.

Is neurofibroma a brain tumor?

Neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1) is the most common heritable brain tumor predisposition disorder, affecting an estimated 1 in 3,500 people worldwide. This neurocutaneous disorder is autosomal dominant with approximately 50% of cases classified as sporadic and 50% as familial.

How does a neurofibroma start?

Neurofibromatosis is caused by genetic defects (mutations) that either are passed on by a parent or occur spontaneously at conception. The specific genes involved depend on the type of neurofibromatosis: NF1 . The NF1 gene is located on chromosome 17.

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Can you live a normal life with NF1?

If there are no complications, the life expectancy of people with NF is almost normal. With the right education, people with NF can live a normal life. Although mental impairment is generally mild, NF1 is a known cause of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Learning disabilities are a common problem.

How do you stop neurofibromas from growing?

There is no medication that can prevent neurofibromas from growing. And, there is nothing you can do that would make more neurofibromas develop. Neurofibromas often appear or grow in size during times of hormone changes such as puberty (which you can’t avoid) and pregnancy.

What happens if Neurofibromatosis is left untreated?

These tumors originate from Schwann cells, which protect your nerve cells and neurotransmitters. Spinal cord schwannomas are common in those with NF2. If left untreated, they can cause paralysis.

Can a neurofibroma grow back?

Because it is often hard to remove all of a plexiform, surgeons often can only take out a portion of the tumor. This is called a debulking procedure. Unfortunately, plexiform neurofibromas may grow back after surgery.

Can a neurofibroma burst?

As neurofibroma is highly vascular, vessel rupture can occur spontaneously or with trivial trauma.

Can neurofibromas disappear?

Manifestations of neurofibromatosis generally do not disappear once they develop, although cafe-au-lait spots sometimes fade in later life. Neurofibromas can appear at any time, as can symptoms of nerve compression.

How common is neurofibroma?

NF1 is among the most common genetic conditions. It is estimated that as many as 1 in 3,000 people have an NF1 mutation.

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