Vestibular Schwannoma – What Is It? Symptoms And Treatment Options

Posted On Dec 27, 2022

4 Min Read

Dr. Sampath Chandra Prasad Rao

Consultant - Ear Nose & Throat Skull Base Surgery

Manipal Hospitals - Old Airport Road - Bengaluru

Vestibular Schwannoma Treatment in Old Airport Road, Bangalore

Vestibular Schwannoma, also called Acoustic neuroma, is a rare, benign tumor that develops on the vestibular nerve. The vestibular nerve is responsible for transmitting balance and spatial orientation information from the inner ear to the brain. So, if you develop this condition, you are likely to lose your hearing ability. 

This tumor is most commonly non-cancerous, but can sometimes be malignant. It is usually slow-growing and may not cause any symptoms in the early stages of their development. This causes the condition to be diagnosed much later and in advanced stages, delaying treatment options and leading a fruitful life.

Symptoms of Vestibular Schwannoma

As the tumor grows, it can cause a range of symptoms. The most common symptom is hearing loss or ringing in one ear. 

Common symptoms may include:

  • Hearing loss or tinnitus (ringing) in the affected ear.

  • Dizziness

  • Vertigo (a sensation of spinning/dizziness)

  • Balance problems

  • Facial numbness or weakness.

  • Headaches

  • Difficulty swallowing

In rare cases, a person may experience loss of taste or facial pain.  If the tumor is large, it can cause pressure on the brainstem, resulting in changes to vision, speech, and facial movement.  

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it is important to see a doctor for a proper diagnosis. Please book an appointment with an ENT consultant in Old Airport Road, Bangalore for a proper evaluation and timely treatment initiation.

What Can Cause Vestibular Schwannoma?

The exact cause of Vestibular Schwannomas is not well understood, but they are thought to be related to genetic changes in cells in the vestibular nerve. These changes can lead to the uncontrolled growth of cells, resulting in the formation of a benign tumor. In some cases, vestibular schwannomas may be associated with certain genetic conditions, such as neurofibromatosis type 2 (NF2) where the tumor grows along with the nerves.

Treating Vestibular Schwannoma

Vestibular Schwannoma can be treated with surgery, radiation therapy, or a combination of both. The treatment chosen will depend on the size and location of the tumor, as well as the overall health of the patient.

The primary vestibular schwannoma treatment in Old Airport Road Bangalore is surgery. Based on the growth of the tumor, the surgeon may perform either a translabyrinthine, middle fossa, or retrosigmoid approach. Radiosurgery may also be used to treat the tumor if it is small and located in a difficult area. Additionally, radiation therapy may be used to reduce the size of the tumor before or after surgery, or as an alternative to surgery.

Given the potential for hearing loss with a Vestibular Schwannoma, it is important to consult with an ENT specialist to discuss treatment options. In some cases, hearing aids or cochlear implants may be used to restore partial hearing. Additionally, physical therapy may be prescribed to help with balance issues.


  • Is vestibular schwannoma serious?

Yes, vestibular schwannoma is a serious condition. It is a type of benign tumor that grows on the vestibulocochlear nerve, which is responsible for hearing and balance. If left untreated, the tumor can continue to grow and eventually cause hearing loss, dizziness, and balance problems. 

  • Is vestibular schwannoma a brain tumor?

Yes, vestibular schwannoma is a type of brain tumor. It is a rare, noncancerous tumor that forms on the balance nerve in the inner ear.

  • Can you recover from vestibular schwannoma?

Yes, it is possible to recover from a vestibular schwannoma. Most people who undergo treatment for a vestibular schwannoma can expect to recover from their symptoms, though some may still experience some residual symptoms.

Dr. Sampath Chandra Prasad Rao

Consultant - Ear, Nose & Throat, Skull Base Surgery

Manipal Hospitals, Old Airport Road, Bangalore