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Acoustic Neuroma
(Vestibular Schwannoma)

An acoustic neuroma, or vestibular schwannoma, is a non-cancerous tumor that develops on the vestibular nerve, which is responsible for balance and hearing. This slow-growing tumor can cause symptoms such as hearing loss, tinnitus (ringing in the ears), and imbalance. As it enlarges, it may compress nearby cranial nerves, leading to facial weakness or numbness. Early diagnosis is crucial, as larger tumors can exert pressure on vital brain structures. Dr. Gregory Lekovic, board-certified neurosurgeon, has extensive experience successfully treating vestibular schwannoma in Los Angeles.

Woman happy and health after being treated for vestibular schwannoma in Los Angeles.

Possible Symptoms Of Acoustic Neuroma:

  • Hearing loss, usually gradual and affecting one ear
  • Tinnitus (ringing in the affected ear)
  • Imbalance or unsteadiness
  • Vertigo (spinning sensation)
  • Headaches
  • Facial numbness or weakness (if the tumor compresses cranial nerves)
  • Difficulty with fine motor skills (in advanced cases)
  • Problems with facial muscle control
  • Difficulty swallowing or hoarseness (in rare cases)
  • Rarely, hydrocephalus (increased pressure in the brain due to blocked cerebrospinal fluid)

Cranial Nerve Schwannoma (Facial Nerve Schwannoma & Trigeminal Nerve Schwannoma)

Cranial nerve schwannomas are non-cancerous tumors that develop from the Schwann cells surrounding cranial nerves. Two common types are facial nerve schwannoma (arising from the seventh cranial nerve), and trigeminal nerve schwannoma (arising from the fifth cranial nerve). These slow-growing tumors can cause various symptoms, depending on the affected nerve. Facial nerve schwannomas may lead to facial weakness or paralysis, while trigeminal nerve schwannomas can cause facial pain or sensory disturbances. Dr. Lekovic is highly experienced in treating all forms of cranial nerve schwannomas, including trigeminal nerve schwannoma and facial nerve schwannoma in Los Angeles.

Possible Symptoms Of Facial Nerve Schwannoma:

  • Facial weakness or paralysis (typically on one side)
  • Loss of facial expression control
  • Difficulty closing the eye on the affected side
  • Hearing loss
  • Dry eye or excessive tearing
  • Impaired sense of taste

Possible Symptoms Of Trigeminal Nerve Schwannoma:

  • Facial pain (trigeminal neuralgia)
  • Sensory disturbances in the face
  • Tingling or numbness in the face
  • Hearing loss
  • Headaches, particularly around the temple or forehead area
  • Rarely, muscle weakness in the jaw or difficulty chewing

Skull Base Meningioma
(Cranial & Skull Base Meningiomas)

Meningiomas are typically benign tumors that arise from the meninges, the protective layers covering the brain and spinal cord. When they develop at the base of the skull, they are referred to as skull base meningiomas. These slow-growing tumors can cause various symptoms depending on their location and size. Cranial meningiomas may lead to headaches, seizures, or neurological issues, while skull base meningiomas affect cranial nerves and brain structures.

Possible Symptoms Of Skull Base Meningiomas:

  • Headaches
  • Seizures
  • Visual disturbances
  • Hearing loss or tinnitus
  • Facial numbness or weakness
  • Difficulty with balance or coordination
  • Changes in smell or taste
  • Cognitive or memory problems
  • Swallowing difficulties
  • Neck pain or stiffness

Cholesterol Granuloma

A cholesterol granuloma is a rare, non-cancerous mass that typically forms within the petrous apex, a bony region of the temporal bone in the skull. This condition is believed to result from the accumulation of blood and cholesterol crystals due to repeated episodes of inflammation or blockage of the drainage pathways. As the mass expands, it can exert pressure on surrounding structures, leading to symptoms such as hearing loss, ear fullness, and facial pain.

Possible Symptoms Of Cholesterol Granuloma:

  • Hearing loss
  • Ear fullness or pressure
  • Tinnitus (ringing in the ear)
  • Vertigo (dizziness)
  • Facial pain or discomfort
  • Drainage of fluid from the ear (rare)
  • Gradual enlargement of the mass (in some cases)
  • Headache (rare)
  • Facial weakness or numbness (rare)
  • Rarely, vision problems or double vision

Glomus Jugulare Tumor

A glomus jugulare tumor is a slow-growing, benign tumor that arises from the glomus cells found within the jugular bulb, a part of the jugular vein in the skull. This tumor is usually non-cancerous but can cause significant symptoms due to its location near the base of the skull. As it enlarges, it may compress surrounding structures, leading to hearing loss, tinnitus (ringing in the ears), and cranial nerve involvement. Early diagnosis and careful evaluation are crucial to manage glomus jugulare tumors and minimize potential complications.

Possible Symptoms Of Glomus Jugulare Tumor:

  • Hearing loss or deafness
  • Tinnitus (ringing in the ears)
  • Vertigo (dizziness)
  • Facial weakness or paralysis
  • Swallowing difficulties
  • Hoarseness or voice changes
  • Headache
  • Sensation of fullness in the ear
  • Enlarged neck veins
  • Rarely, vision problems or double vision

Glomus Vagale Tumor

A glomus vagale tumor is a rare, benign tumor originating from the glomus cells of the vagus nerve. These tumors typically occur within the carotid sheath in the neck. Although non-cancerous, they can cause various symptoms due to their location near vital structures. Common symptoms include hoarseness, difficulty swallowing, and a mass in the neck. Glomus vagale tumors can be challenging to diagnose, necessitating careful evaluation to differentiate them from other neck masses and determine the appropriate management plan.

Possible Symptoms Of Glomus Vagale Tumor:

  • Hoarseness or voice changes
  • Difficulty swallowing (dysphagia)
  • Neck mass or lump
  • Sensation of fullness in the throat
  • Ear pain or discomfort
  • Tinnitus (ringing in the ears)
  • Enlarged neck lymph nodes
  • Rarely, cough or shortness of breath
  • Rarely, facial weakness or numbness

Other Skull Base Conditions:

Please note that this list includes some of the other skull base conditions treated by Dr. Gregory Lekovic; however, it is not an exhaustive list. Dr. Lekovic provides expert care for a wide range of skull base conditions. If you have questions or concerns about any of these conditions or others not listed here, don’t hesitate to get in touch with Dr. Lekovic’s office.

Acoustic Neuroma:

  • Auditory Brainstem Implant
  • Cranial Nerve Schwannoma
  • Schwannoma of the Facial and Trigeminal Nerves


  • Skull Base Cancers
  • Salivary Cancers
  • Skin Cancers
  • Sinonasal Cancers

Peripheral Nerve Sheath Tumors:

  • Brachial Plexus Schwannoma
  • Lower Cranial Nerve Peripheral Nerve Sheath Tumors
  • Peripheral Nerve Sheath Tumors


  • Cranial and Skull Base Meningioma
  • Spinal Meningioma
  • Petroclival, Cerebellopontine Angle, and Tentorial Meningioma
  • Foramen Magnum Meningioma
  • Jugular Foramen Meningioma


  • Chordoma
  • Chondrosarcoma
  • Epidermoid Tumor
  • Glomus Jugulare Tumor
  • Glomus Vagale Tumor
  • Infratemporal Fossa Tumors
  • Tumors of the Jugular Foramen
  • Orbital tumors
  • Cavernous Sinus Tumor
  • Metastatic Tumor

Additional Conditions:

  • Tegmen Defect/CSF Otorrhea/Skull Base Encephalocele
  • Cholesterol Granuloma
  • Pituitary Adenoma
  • Craniopharyngioma
  • Rathke Cleft Cyst
  • Pituicytoma
  • Superior Semicircular Canal Dehiscence
  • Esthesioneuroblastoma
  • Arnold-Chiari Malformation
  • Craniovertebral Junction Instability
  • Metastatic and Primary Malignancies of the CVJ
  • Superior Canal Dehiscence
Doctor taking notes before carotid neck surgery in Los Angeles.

Contact Us Today

Dr. Lekovic, a skilled board-certified neurosurgeon with expertise in skull base conditions, invites you to schedule a consultation to address any concerns related to skull base tumors, cranial nerve disorders, or other complex neurosurgical issues. Early evaluation and appropriate management are crucial to ensuring the best possible outcomes. Experience the benefits of Dr. Lekovic’s skill and compassionate approach to patient care. He has extensive experience with treating skull base conditions such as vestibular schwannoma in Los Angeles. Schedule an appointment today for a consultation.

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