Within the hour of leaving my general physician’s office, I received a phone call from the administration of House Ear Clinic and had an appointment the following day. At my appointment, I met with Dr. Kevin Peng. He assured me that although my tumor was on the large side, they would be able to help me. After reviewing my MRI, Dr. Kevin Peng and Dr. Gregory Lekovic (neurosurgeon) decided to take the translabyrinthine approach to removing my tumor. I was heartbroken at the thought and possibility that I’d never be able to smile the same, or show natural facial expressions. As a first grade teacher, I rely heavily on my face throughout the day when I read books, talk to children, and interact with colleagues.
Going into my surgery, I was preparing for my life to drastically change afterwards. Dr. Peng and Dr. Lekovic worked for twelve and a half hours to remove my tumor, alongside many brilliant surgeons, specialists, and nurses. Miraculously, they saved my face! All of my friends and family have said they couldn’t tell I’d just had brain surgery.
I spent four days afterwards recovering at St. Vincent’s Medical Center and was able to walk independently on the fourth day. Dr. Michael Stefan (internist) was so kind and checked on me each day while I was in the hospital, and the nurses were all so kind and caring. Each surgeon and specialist also checked on me post op to ensure I was doing fine.
I am a few days past the two month marker of my surgery, and my life is completely back to normal.
I am a few days past the two month marker of my surgery, and my life is completely back to normal. I walk every day, drive, get together with friends, go to concerts, and go swimming. Although I have lost all hearing in my right ear, it is a small price to pay. I would recommend anyone with an acoustic neuroma to go straight to the House Ear Clinic. They saved my life, and I am forever grateful!
It’s around this time that a friend urged me to get a second opinion from the House Clinic. So I sent the copy of my MRI to Dr. Eric Wilkinson who gave me a free consultation over the phone. He gave me valuable information to help me make an educated decision for the best treatment, and he always promptly answered my emails of any subsequent questions I had. He was very knowledgeable and very experienced, and based on the location and size of my tumor, he and Dr. Gregory Lekovic recommended the transotic surgical approach, which is an extension to the translabrynthine approach. I knew I was in good hands with them.
After some insurance issues (we finally switched to a different plan), my surgery was scheduled for March, 27th, 2019. By then my tumor had further grown to 2.6 cm, but Drs. Wilkinson, Lekovic, and Noonan, who wanted me to have the best quality of life possible, were able to successfully remove the whole tumor with no damage to my facial nerve. Losing my hearing was a small price to pay in exchange for an intact face.
Over the next few days in the hospital, I truly felt the compassion of all the doctors and nurses, both from the House Clinic and from St. Vincent’s. They all treated me as if I were their daughter. I recovered well and was told I was doing better than 90% of patients at that stage of recovery.
I’m so grateful to Drs. Lekovic, Wilkinson, and Noonan for being my doctors, and I’m glad I chose to be treated by them for the best outcome possible.
So, after graduating, I finally saw an ENT who, not detecting any problems in my eardrum, ordered an MRI of my brain. As a result, a large 5 cm acoustic neuroma was discovered.
The thought of having to undergo neurosurgery to remove it shook me deep inside. I was immediately referred to the House Clinic where I met with Dr. Kevin Peng and Dr. Gregory Lekovic who would be my surgeons. Both were gentle and kind, but at the same time, confident, professional, obviously knowledgeable, experienced and highly competent. This did a lot to put me at ease. They explained the whole procedure and what I should expect. And although mine was an unusually large tumor posing greater risks than smaller ones, they left me feeling confident that all would work out.
My parents, who were also under a great deal of stress before and during the 18-hour long procedure, were so impressed with these men as well as the entire surgical team and nurses who took care of me before and after. Everyone was so conscientious about my parent’s concerns and so ensured that they received regular and encouraging updates throughout the procedure. Even directly following the operation, at 3:00 a.m., the Drs. Peng and Lekovic went straight to my parents in the waiting room to report on the results and to offer some more encouraging words.
…my tumor was entirely removed without even the slightest damage to my facial nerve.
At my appointment, I met with Dr. Kevin Peng. He assured me that although my tumor was on the large side, they would be able to help me. After reviewing my MRI, Dr. Kevin Peng and Dr. Gregory Lekovic (neurosurgeon) decided to take the translabyrinthine approach to removing my tumor. I was depressed at the thought and possibility that I’d never be able to smile the same, or show natural facial expressions. As a salesman, I rely heavily on my face throughout the day when I talk to customers, and interact with colleagues.
Going into my surgery, I was preparing for my life to drastically change afterwards. Dr. Peng and Dr. Lekovic worked for fourteen hours to remove my tumor, alongside many brilliant surgeons, specialists, and nurses. Miraculously, they saved my face! All of my friends and family have said they couldn’t tell I’d just had brain surgery.
I spent four days afterwards recovering at St. Vincent’s Medical Center and was able to walk independently on the fourth day. Dr. Michael Stefan (Internist) was so kind and checked on me each day while I was in the hospital, and the nurses were all so kind and caring. Each surgeon and specialist also checked on me post op to ensure I was doing fine.
I am a few days past the two month marker of my surgery, and my life is completely back to normal. I walk every day, drive, get together with friends and go to work again. Although I have lost all hearing in my right ear, it is a small price to pay. I would recommend anyone with an acoustic neuroma to go straight to the House Ear Clinic. They saved my life, and I am forever grateful!
I was diagnosed with an acoustic neuroma on March 22, 2018. This was after eight months of complaining to local doctors about hearing loss in my right ear. All this time I was told it was everything from allergies to age. Finally, an MRI revealed an acoustic neuroma and soon I was referred to Dr. Slattery at the House Clinic.
I was scheduled for a consultation at the clinic within a week and at the consultation I was accompanied by my father and sister (a nurse practitioner). We came prepared with multiple questions and possible scenarios. Dr. Slattery met with us and after reviewing the MRI, he clearly explained the tumor, its location, and all the possible options, including the pros and cons of each. Every single one of our questions was patiently answered, some before we even had to ask. We immediately felt comfortable with him and his advice. Not once did we feel rushed or felt he was just giving us a canned generic speech.
Ultimately, surgical removal was the best option for me. It was explained to us that the surgery would be performed as a team with both Dr. Slattery and Dr. Lekovic, the neurosurgeon.
Shortly before the surgery I had a pre-op appointment at the House Clinic, and had my first appointment with Dr. Lekovic. At this appointment, accompanied by both my parents, we were thoroughly impressed with the time and manner by which Dr. Lekovic explained the procedure. He explained in clear terms how the goal was to attempt to remove as much of the tumor as could safely be removed, while at the same time attempting to avoid damage to the surrounding nerves. Again we felt immediately confident and comfortable.
My surgery was scheduled for May 3rd, 2018 at Saint Vincent’s Hospital. We knew the procedure would be lengthy, approximately eight hours. All during surgery, my family was kept informed and updated with the progress through the use of their friendly and knowledgeable hospital liaison. My family found great comfort in knowing that the doctors had arranged to make her available as they waited for the surgery to conclude.
Thanks to the skill and expertise of both doctors, my tumor was removed completely while keeping my facial nerve intact and undamaged.
Thanks to the skill and expertise of both doctors, my tumor was removed completely while keeping my facial nerve intact and undamaged. I remained in the hospital for four nights (just as I was advised). Although there was a hospital primary doctor “in charge” of my care, both Drs. Slattery and Lekovic checked on me almost every day. Everything went exactly as the doctors had explained and about ten days post-op, I returned to the House Clinic for my follow-up.
At my post-op appointment one of the fellows removed my sutures and gave me post-op physical therapy instructions. Again, Drs. Slattery and Lekovic met with me and both took the time to sit and talk to me about how I was feeling, what to expect, and which side effects were normal and which ones warranted a call to the clinic. Both doctors encouraged me to call 24/7 if I ever needed assistance or had a concern.
Drs. Slattery and Lekovic made my family and I feel more like friends than patients.
Right now my recovery is progressing daily, exactly as I was told it would. Absolutely everything they advised and consulted me on was 100% accurate. Drs. Slattery and Lekovic made my family and I feel more like friends than patients. They took their time to explain everything in a way that we could understand and never rushed us or made us feel like we could not ask further questions. They took the time and effort to ask questions about my daily life and routine and advised me accordingly as to what to expect not only during my recovery but also for the long term.
I am extremely grateful for both of these wonderful doctors and feel extremely fortunate that I had not one but two extraordinary and caring doctors whose skill and expertise will allow me to benefit from a full and complete recovery from something that started off to be one of the scariest things a person could be told: “You have a brain tumor”. I will be forever grateful!
In November 2018, after a night out, I removed my ear plugs and noticed significant hearing loss along with tinnitus. Several weeks later, I had an MRI. As a person who relies on his hearing, it was devastating to learn of a vestibular schwannoma (acoustic neuroma) diagnosis. I thought my days as an audio engineer were numbered, but then I was referred to the House Clinic for treatment.
My cousin was a patient of Dr. Brackmann in the late 90’s and has nothing but praise for his level of care. She too was diagnosed with an acoustic neuroma that was successfully removed and because of this I felt confident going into my first appointment with Dr. Brackmann. The moment he asked me how I was taking all this in, I knew I was in the right place. All my questions were answered in depth and I was even given the doctor’s published academic journals to read, which put me at ease. After further testing, I elected to go with tumor removal. Several people advised me to get a second opinion, but I was at peace with my decision.
On March 4th, I had my pre-op and met the neurosurgeon, Dr. Gregory Lekovic, who also left me feeling confident and hopeful. He made sure we were on the same page and that I understood what was ahead. My pre-surgery anxiety was alleviated.
Thanks again to Dr. Brackmann and Dr. Lekovic for removing the tumor, preserving my available hearing, and leaving the facial nerves intact. I couldn’t have asked for a better outcome.
On March 6th, I had surgery at St. Vincent’s Hospital, which lasted 9 hours. Throughout the surgery, doctors would come out to give my family an update. My mother expressed to me her gratitude for that. I woke up hazy, but the pain was minimal. The doctors checked in on me daily. The hardest part was staying in bed for 12 hours straight. I was ready to go for a walk, but doctors restrict movement during that first night. I spent three nights in the hospital and was discharged.
My close friends and family tell me that it is a miracle to see me walking. They are shocked at how quickly I recovered. In less than 6 weeks I was back to work, driving, and working out. Thanks again to Dr. Brackmann and Dr. Lekovic for removing the tumor, preserving my available hearing, and leaving the facial nerves intact. I couldn’t have asked for a better outcome. My post-op hearing and tinnitus has improved to the point where I can continue being an audio engineer. I’m incredibly fortunate and grateful to be a House Clinic patient, where miracles can happen.
I was referred to Dr. William Slattery. When my wife and I met with him, my condition was thoroughly explained, our questions answered and my treatment options discussed in easy to understand terminology. It was explained to me that any hearing loss prior to surgery would not be restored after the tumor was removed. Because I had very little hearing loss, I chose to move forward with surgery to have my acoustic neuroma removed and prevent additional hearing loss that could not be reversed. Dr. Slattery explained that the middle fossa procedure I chose allowed for a 60% chance of preserving my hearing but that the primary goal was to preserve the facial nerve. I learned that the procedure would be performed as a team with Dr. Slattery as well as a neurosurgeon, Dr Lekovic.
Knowing the reputation and cutting edge procedures offered by House Clinic, I decided to have the procedure done there. In preparation for my surgery, I was seeing other doctors out of the area and closer to my home and I was told I had selected both excellent doctors and an excellent clinic for my procedure. Now that I have been through the surgery of having the acoustic neuroma removed, I can say I strongly agree with those comments.
My journey from diagnosis to removal and recovery continued. What I would call a care team was assembled. In addition to meeting with doctors Slattery and Lekovic to discuss what to expect during and after my surgery, St. Vincent Medical Center (the hospital) had a representative present in my meetings with the doctors to answer all of my questions relative to my hospital stay. I felt the hospital representative was also an important part of my care team. She set up a date for us to tour the hospital floor devoted to House Clinic patients and also made herself available to contact with any questions or concerns before, during and after my stay. My wife and I were thrilled to find there was a reasonably priced housing area attached to the hospital where my wife could safely stay during my hospitalization.
On the day prior to my March 19, 2019 surgery, my wife and I had appointments with my care team and the internal medicine doctor overseeing my hospital stay to discuss any questions or concerns we might have regarding the next day procedure. They were all compassionate, caring and reassuring.
My surgery was about 8 hours long and successful. My family were kept informed and updated while I was in surgery and recovery. The tumor was removed, my facial nerve was undamaged and although I continue to have mild tinnitus, my hearing was preserved. During my stay in the hospital, the entire team checked in on me and my progress and answered our questions. They informed us as to what to expect during the healing and recovery process when we arrived home.
The tumor was removed, my facial nerve was undamaged and although I continue to have mild tinnitus, my hearing was preserved.
We were extremely happy with our decision to select House Clinic, Dr Slattery, Dr Lekovic and St. Vincent Medical Center for the tumor removal procedure and hospital stay. I am now 9 weeks post-surgery and have been able to return to the activities I enjoyed prior to my diagnosis. My primarily rehab therapy has been in the area of improving my balance and it continues to improve. I highly recommend these doctors and facilities to anyone diagnosed with an acoustic neuroma.
“It was a typical day out with friends, when I realized that the louder it was in the restaurant we were in, the harder it was to hear out of my left ear. This had gone on for over a year and I associated it with allergies and ear wax build up. Later, when a friend questioned why I was reading their lips is when I realized I really couldn’t hear well. I made an appointment with the ear, nose and throat doctor. They cleaned out my ears and started me on allergy shots.
After a few weeks, I still couldn’t hear well out of my left ear and that it was even worse than it had ever been before. I went back to the ENT and he suggested I get an MRI. I received the news I wasn’t looking forward to that I had a 1.4 cm tumor in my left ear. The doctor suggested three options for me and I could make the decision. After research and reading, I made the decision to go with surgery and was recommended to see Dr. Eric Wilkinson at House Clinic Acoustic Neuroma Center at St. Vincent Medical Center in Los Angeles, California.
I knew surgery was the best option even as scary as it was. I have never had major surgery nor have I ever had to stay multiple days in the hospital. I decided before mysurgery that I would live it up and spend the weekend before with my girlfriends at the Route 91 Concert in Las Vegas. Although I was not injured in the shooting, it would be the most traumatic experience I have ever had to endure. After the concert, I was numb to the fact that I was about to have a craniotomy a week and half later. I knew I needed to be strong and continue with the surgery even though my heart was breaking.
To my surprise, the staff at St. Vincent Medical Center and House Clinic was amazing after explaining what I had been through. I am now recovering well and was even able to walk on the beach a week post surgery. Strength and courage go a long way and I am forever grateful to be alive and well today.”Rhonda Martines
“I can recall the day after Thanksgiving in 2015 like it was yesterday. I had, my then 6-year-old son, and his friends playing at the house and I bent down to clean up all the toys they had scattered on the floor. As I started to lift my body up, my hearing on the left side went completely out and I heard ringing. It eventually came back after about 45 seconds, but then It started to happen more often.
I naturally attributed this to the stresses in my life. I was hosting and getting ready for all of the holidays, working full time and trying to decide between a management position that two competing hospitals were offering me. Oh yes, I forgot to mention the irony of this whole story…. I am a Speech-language Pathologist-go figure!
As I made my decision to stay at my hospital and take the Director position of Speech and Hearing and the Balance Center (irony) and finally the holidays started to end, I figured my sudden left sided hearing loss would disappear…. but no. So as the 2016 New Year drew closer, I found myself sitting at my laptop one night with a glass of red wine doing what most healthcare professionals do…googling my possible illnesses and diagnosing myself. I typed in “sudden unilateral hearing loss” and there it was “Acoustic Neuroma.” I laughed, shook my head in disbelief and thought I had drunk too much wine. Then I thought, “a benign brain tumor? There is no way I have this….” I googled it the same over and over with the same responses and there it was again, “Acoustic Neuroma!” How could I have one of these?
I learned about these in my graduate studies for Speech-language Pathology when I had to take an audiology course and I have seen patients before who had suffered through one and were having follow up with the Neuro-otologist at our Balance center, but, “Me?” This could not be. So, I kept my mouth shut and went on with my days until February of 2016.
One of my colleagues, a Laryngologist who is the medical director for our swallow and voice institute, saw me off balance and he asked if I was alright and I answered in my normal sarcastic way, “I don’t know especially with this sudden unilateral hearing loss that I’ve had since November.” At that moment he commanded me to take an audiology test and there it was! Apparently, I had the classic audiogram that you would see on someone who had an acoustic neuroma. The audiologist and medical director looked at me in disbelief and next I was summoned to have an MRI immediately.”Paula Dinu
“My name is Nida and I am 59 years of age.
In 2007, I was complaining of headaches and migraines for almost seven years until one day, I asked my primary doctor to order an MRI of my head with and without contrast. I was shocked to be diagnosed as having a meningioma tumor. My internist doctor referred me to a neurologist in Facey Medical Group who told me these tumors are benign and slow growing so we decided to monitor for growth.
In June 2014, suddenly the ringing in my left ear kept getting louder and louder such that I could no longer sleep. In addition, I was having pain in my left shoulder and I noticed my balance was unsteady as well. Also, the left side of my face was feeling numb and my left eye was twitching. I was diagnosed as having vertigo and prescribed physical therapy until it got worst to the point that I could no longer work.
Eventually in 2016, I was referred to Dr. Lekovic at the House Clinic, and at the time of making the appointment, I was advised to take my MRI CD along with me. After Dr. Lekovic carefully reviewed my MRI, he recommended the retrosigmoid approach to removing the meningioma. Meanwhile, while reviewing my MRI, Dr. Lekovic also noted that I had a small pituitary tumor which at the time we decided to monitor for growth.
Surgery to remove the meningioma was successful. I spent one night in the dedicated House Clinic ICU at St. Vincent Medical Center and the next day I was able to walk to the bathroom and was transferred to the telemetry unit. On the second day, I began physical therapy. My total hospital stay was five days. My experience at the House Clinic and the St Vincent Hospital was the best. I received excellent service from the staff, surgery counselors, nurses, case managers, physical therapists and all of the medical staff team.
In 2018, two years after my meningioma surgery, my primary doctor ordered a follow up MRI and it was determined that the pitiutary tumor we had been monitoring had grown in size to approximately 8 mm.
Again, I consulted with Dr. Lekovic to have it removed and the surgery was scheduled for August, 2018 with Dr. Wilkinson and Dr. Lekovic. As with my previous experience with my House Clinic doctors, the tumor was successfully removed.
I believe I have a new life! I’m glad and thank God that I went to Dr. Lekovic at the House Clinic who along with Drs. Miller and Wilkinson cured me of these tumors. I feel I was in very good hands.”Nida
“My name is Kenny and I was diagnosed with semicircular canal dehiscence syndrome (SCDS) on my right side. The symptoms began just over two years ago when I started noticing that when I spoke I was hearing the sounds of my own voice in my head, loud and distorted. Over time it got worse and worse. It got to the point that I was hearing myself breath with every breath. I was also hearing the pulse of my heart with every beat. It was absolutely miserable. It had such an impact on my day to day life that every day was a challenge to get through. There were days the autophony was so bad that I was mute, definitely not something I could live with having a career in law enforcement.
I saw my local ENT. He took a few educated guesses and attempted to diagnose my condition but was met with negative results. Finally, he recommended I make an appointment with the House Clinic. That very day I called and had an appointment for a week later. I was so impressed they got me in so quick.
The following week I met with Dr. Kevin Peng who seemed confident he would be able to get to the bottom of this. He set me up for a CT scan to look for possible SCDS. When I came back for the follow up appointment he had the news I had been waiting so long to hear, a diagnosis! Now it was time to discuss the surgery. A very serious surgery in a scary location, my head!
I was so impressed with the House Clinic and the team they put on my case. There was Dr. Peng, my primary doctor/surgeon (neurotologist) on my case, and the man who diagnosed me! Then there was Dr. Gregory Lekovic, my neurosurgeon who did a great job explaining his part in the surgery. Also, Dr. Michael Stefan who was my acting primary care physician, clearing me for surgery and stopping by my room every day to check on me. And last but not least was Roya (patient liaison) who was very helpful in keeping the line of communication open with my family with updates during the surgery. She was there to help with anything we needed during my hospital stay. The surgery was performed at St. Vincent Medical Center and my family and I were blown out of the water with the level of care I received during my stay. The nurses went above and beyond to keep me comfortable and help in any way I needed.
The operation was successful. For the first time in two years I’m hearing normal! I couldn’t be more impressed by the House Clinic and St. Vincent Medical Center. I give them a score of 11 out of 10. I would recommend them to anybody! Thank you, House Clinic and Dr. Peng and the rest of the team.”Kenny
“I came to Dr. Mia Miller three years ago concerning ringing or tinnitus in my right ear. An MRI revealed that I had an acoustic vestibular tumor. At the time, she recommended a watch-and-see approach as to the tumor’s future growth, since results of prior third-party hearing tests showed less than 50% remaining hearing and surgery was therefore not recommended. However, after a year’s monitoring of the tumor’s growth, hearing tests at the House Institute late last year revealed that my hearing was actually more than 50% in the affected ear and so she explained that I was therefore a candidate for surgical tumor removal.
Dr. Miller was straight-forward in her explanations as to what I should expect if I decided not to have surgery and wait and monitor the tumor’s growth over time. She also reviewed with me what possible favorable results or possible negative side effects (hearing loss, continued or worsening tinnitus, balance or dizziness issues, headaches, etc.) I should expect if I were to decide to go ahead with tumor removal surgery. These discussions with her along with her past experience and expertise with other patients helped me in my decision-making process to proceed with the surgery.
During our first introductory meeting a few months before I had decided to proceed with the surgery, my neurosurgeon, Dr. Gregory Lekovic, came across to me as competent and very experienced. During our pre-op meeting a week prior to the surgical procedure, he reviewed the aspects of what was to happen right before surgery, during surgery and after the surgery. I appreciated his straightforwardness and matter-of-fact explanations. It was during this session that we talked about our shared enjoyment of comedian Jim Gaffigan, who has performed a humorous routine about his wife Jeannie’s serious and life-threatening brain surgery. We laughed about parts of the routine that we could remember, including how long the surgery would most likely take. It was nice to know we could both find humor in such a serious situation. He answered the few questions I had and I left the session satisfied that I’d be in good hands during the surgery.
The St. Vincent Medical Center surgical team I met just before the surgery were very warm, friendly and reassuring. The surgery was completed and went very well as far as I’m concerned (being sedated of course during the entire procedure). Both Dr. Miller and Dr. Lekovic visited me on both the Thursday and Friday after my Wednesday surgery and were as personable as always to me and my visiting family members. They took time to review my progress and answer our questions and address any of our concerns. Members of their team also visited me on the Saturday and Sunday before my release and they were also helpful and understanding.”Gary Spence
“Hearing the words, “You’ll need a craniotomy.” Is never what anyone anticipates hearing in their whole lifetime but there I was. It was so scary and relieving at the same time because someone finally had an answer to my pain but now I had to have a scary procedure, thousands of miles away from home. I had been diagnosed with a Cholesterol Granuloma in my skull base and having pain for 5 months behind my left eye. It is a rare condition and I live in Alaska and that is not something we have the capabilities to do here.
Several doctors had given me no hope saying it was too dangerous and close to my carotid artery to be able to fix and I had to live with the pain. The amazing Dr. Lorenz here in Alaska refused to give up and referred me to the House Clinic. He had worked with Dr. Wilkinson and Dr. Lekovic in the past and highly recommended them. It was so comforting just to hear that someone had an answer to my weird symptoms. Dr. Wilkinson met with my husband and me over the phone, answered our questions, was patient, knowledgeable, and kind. Especially since my husband and I are both nurses, we had a lot of detailed questions and concerns. He comforted us both and we knew the correct decision was to make the trip to California.
The House clinic was very helpful before and upon arrival to LA. Roya was so sweet to help me in all my anxiety and questions, attended my appointments, and checked in with me every day in the hospital. She helped me get into Seton Hall as a patient housing center next to the hospital until I would be able to return home. I felt comforted when I met with the doctors the day before surgery. They calmed my nerves and for the first time all year I did not feel crazy describing my symptoms to them. They took as much time as I needed to go through the details and Dr. Lekovic even offered to facetime my 11-year-old son in Alaska as he wanted to check the doctor’s credentials who was going to be operating on his mom’s head.
Surgery went well. I woke from surgery with no pain behind my eye for the first time in six months. I was so excited and was up and walking around LA in only a few days. Seton Hall was calm and relaxing after surgery. Everyone there was in a similar situation and some with matching scars. Dr. Wilkinson was very conservative with the hair cut as well. The scar was easy to hide by just parting my hair onto the other side. If you are reading this then you are most likely in a similar situation. Best of luck to you and may God bless you in your journey as well. You are in good hands at the House Clinic!”Heidi
“My hearing had progressively been getting worse over the past two years. I thought it was just part of the aging process although I was only 58. On a routine visit to my primary doctor I mentioned the hearing loss and she referred me to an ENT.
On October 16th I saw the ENT who said I had significant hearing loss in my right ear and it was not due to aging but due to nerve damage and that the cause needed to be determined. An MRI was ordered for October 22nd and I returned and few days later on the 26th for the results. I was diagnosed with having an Acoustic Neuroma and was referred to the House Ear Clinic.
On November 5th, I traveled four hours to the clinic and saw Dr. John House who clearly discussed my options. Surgery was recommended and I was introduced to Dr. Kevin Peng (neurotologist) who would, along with the House Clinic neurosurgeon, attempt at fully removing the tumor. Dr. Peng explained the surgery and his role during the surgery.
Although I have been a registered nurse for 37 years, Dr. Lekovic took time to explain everything in terms that my family and I would understand. He had pictures and props to explain what was going to be done during surgery. Not once did he rush the conversation and he allowed time for questions and our satisfactory understanding.
On November 8th I again returned to the clinic to meet the neurosurgeon, Dr. Gregory Lekovic. Although I have been a registered nurse for 37 years, Dr. Lekovic took time to explain everything in terms that my family and I would understand. He had pictures and props to explain what was going to be done during surgery. Not once did he rush the conversation and he allowed time for questions and our satisfactory understanding. Two days prior to surgery I again had a pre-op meeting with Dr. Lekovic. He again reviewed the surgery patiently, taking his time, allowing for any further questions and needed explanations.
My surgery was October 2, 2018. The tumor was completely removed and I had no facial paralysis and no further hearing loss and only minor balance issues (which are expected after the procedure) as the balance nerves were severed. I was discharged three days later.
Other than some miscommunication with my House Clinic surgery counselor, which was satisfactorily resolved, the whole process went by smoothly and to my satisfaction. I would highly recommend House Ear Clinic.”Diana Christie
“On July 19, 2018, I had a translabyrinthine resection of my acoustic neuroma (~2 cm) by House Clinic physicians Drs. Slattery and Lekovic. I am 41 years old and the symptoms which led me to have an MRI and the discovery of the acoustic neuroma were hearing loss, intermittent headaches and tinnitus. Today is August 8, 2018 and I feel great! Thank goodness my worries about facial weakness, resulting from surgery, are over as I have no facial weakness! I’m very thankful for my doctors and the staff who cared for me and my well-being. Before surgery, I met with my doctors who were very patient with me, answering all my questions and addressing all my concerns. It was then that I knew that I had made the right decision choosing the House Clinic and deciding to go ahead with surgery. Thank you so much House Clinic and St. Vincent Medical Center for everything!”Brenda Z