Peripheral Nerve Tumors

Peripheral nerve tumors occur in the nerves (peripheral) that link the brain and spinal cord to other parts of the body such as in the arms or legs.  The vast majority of these are benign (non cancerous) but they do effect nerve function and cause pain and disability.  They may occur anywhere in the body however are less common than other tumors.  Individuals suffering from neurofibromatosis or schwannomatosis are at greater of developing peripheral nerve tumors.

Three main types:

  • Neurofibroma: Benign tumors that grow on the nerve and patients tend to have multiple tumors.
  • Schwannoma: Grow along the nerve sheath, are slow growing and generally occur in isolation.
  • Malignant Peripheral nerve Sheath Tumor (neurofibrosarcoma): Cancerous tumors that grow in the cells surrounding peripheral nerves.  They tend to be aggressive and often require both surgical removal and medical therapy such as radiation or chemotherapy.


Symptoms vary and some patients may not display any symptoms whilst others may experience

  • Pain
  • A soft tissue growth or mass
  • Numbness, burning or tingling
  • Weakness in affected area.


Treatment plan will be dependent on a number of factors including, tumor type and patient symptoms.  Our neurosurgeons are trained to treat and work with you and your health care team to uncover the best treatment plan for you.  Some benign tumors require no active action, simply monitoring the growth of the tumor and the patient’s symptoms.  Other tumors however may require a more aggressive approach, including surgical removal of the tumor in addition to medical therapy with radiation or chemotherapy.  Our neurosurgeons and staff will walk you through your options and answer any questions you may have.


Referenced: National Institute of Neurological Disease and Stroke, American Association of Neurological Surgeons.

Contact us today to schedule your consultation appointment.