Treatment of Meningioma in Orange County
Meningioma is a tumor that forms on the layer of membranes that cover the brain and spinal cord just inside the skull. Meningiomas press against the brain or spinal cord. It is estimated that 85 percent of meningiomas are benign or non-cancerous and slow growing. Most meningiomas can be completely removed surgically, while some may not need immediate treatment and can often remain undetected for many years.
There is no obvious cause of a meningioma. But studies show that meningioma occurs three times more in women than in men. Other risk factors that increase the chance of developing meningioma are:
- Receiving radiation therapy on the head to treat an infection of the scalp, or tumors of the head, neck or brain.
- People suffering from neurofibromatosis type 2, a rare and inherited nervous system disorder, often get benign tumors of the nerves throughout the body.
Symptoms of meningioma appear slowly as it develops slowly. It causes symptoms only when it’s pressing on the brain or spinal cord. Most meningiomas are found incidentally on imaging or scans of patients while on seeing a doctor for other conditions. Symptoms are location dependent. The most common symptoms of meningioma are:
- Blurry vision
- Weakness in the arms or legs
- Loss of balance
- Hearing loss
- Memory loss
Initial treatment will involve thorough medical history and physical exam, including the patient’s symptoms, personal and family health history. To help detect meningioma, Robert Louis, MD conducts a neurological exam to test a patient’s vision, hearing, balance, coordination, reflexes, memory and the ability to think.
To help Dr. Louis diagnose and find the exact location of meningioma, he may perform tests and order special imaging:
Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI): This is the preferred way to diagnose meningioma. A special dye called a contrast medium is injected into a patient’s vein before the scan to create a clearer picture.
Stereotactic neurosurgery/Biopsy: Dr. Louis will perform this technique, which uses a needle guided to the tumor or it can be done during surgery when the surgeon can look at the tumor directly. This process is crucial as it will dictate the best course of treatment and will also give important information about prognosis.
After diagnostic tests are done, Dr. Louis will review all of the results with you and describe the tumor stage, grade and best treatment options.
Treatment option of meningioma by your brain surgeon, Robert Louis, MD, will depend on the location of the meningioma, the patient’s overall health condition and whether the meningioma is benign or malignant.
For a small meningioma that does not cause symptoms, observation is the best option to monitor its growth or development. If the meningioma remains benign or non-malignant and is not developing, the patient may never need any surgical treatment or therapies.
When it is not possible to operate or remove the meningioma completely and safely because it’s located in a part of the brain that can’t be operated on, radiation is the best treatment option.
Keyhole Surgical Approaches
Surgery remains the most common and may only be the only treatment needed for meningioma, especially if it’s benign and located in a place where it can be accessed and removed. This will be followed by regular imaging to monitor recurrence of meningioma.
Robert Louis, MD specializes in minimally invasive removal of meningioma that is proven to be safer and more effective. Less invasive keyhole surgical approaches incorporates Dr. Louis’ experience and education with cutting edge technology and instrumentation.
- Endonasal Endoscopy: A technique that allows an endoscope to be threaded through the nose and sinus to reach and remove meningioma in various areas of the brain.
- Supraorbital Eyebrow Craniotomy: An incision is made within the eyebrow to access metastatic brain tumors located in the front of the brain or around the pituitary gland. This procedure is also used for gliomas, meningiomas, craniopharyngiomas and other tumors near the optic nerves and pituitary gland.
- Retromastoid Craniotomy: Done through an incision at the back of the ear to access and remove meningioma.
Robert Louis, MD, a fellowship-trained Orange County Neurosurgeon, is the Director of the Skull Base and Pituitary Tumor Program at Hoag Memorial Hospital in Orange County, California. Dr. Louis has particular expertise in endoscopic and minimally invasive treatment of benign and malignant brain tumors, sellar and parasellar tumors and skull base tumors.
Dr. Robert Louis specializes in minimally invasive brain surgery for the treatment of sinunasal carcinoma. For appointments, please call (949) 383-4185 or Contact Us.