What is neurofibromatosis?
Neurofibromatosis is a genetic condition that causes the development of tumors on virtually any nerve in the body, including the brain and spinal cord. It is usually diagnosed in childhood and can be inherited from an affected parent in approximately one-half of patients. In other words, there is roughly a 50 percent chance that an affected parent will pass on the condition. In the remainder of patients, there is no known previous family history. Currently, there are 3 types of neurofibromatosis identified.
Dr. Andre Panossian has been treating patients with neurofibromatosis for more than a decade. He recognizes the unique requirements and challenges faced by individuals with NF. His primary focus is in the surgical removal of NF tumors almost anywhere on the body, including major peripheral nerves. Throughout his approach, Dr. Panossian implements a logical surgical plan that takes into account the physiology of neurofibroma tumors. He frequently meets with patients from all over the world through seminars and conferences as well as Skype. Dr. Panossian is always striving to improve surgical techniques to minimize scarring and to maintain long-term reduction of tumors.
“For many years, people with neurofibromatosis have been told that there is little to be done. Dr. Panossian believes that a thoughtful surgical strategy can improve the lives of patients living with NF.”
What do I do next?
If you have been doing your research on plastic surgeons for your cosmetic or reconstructive needs, then look no further. Dr. Panossian combines his passion for plastic surgery with a strong focus on patient well-being. The consultation is only the first encounter that will leave you feeling confident in your decision to pursue plastic surgery. Dr. Panossian’s wealth of knowledge in the field is matched only by his highly skilled hand in the operating room. Rest assured that your best interests and desires for the absolute finest result is at the heart of his entire approach.
There are several options for pursuing a consultation with Dr. Panossian. The best way to get a proper assessment and surgical plan is to come into our office. A lengthy consultation will go over your options and answer any and all of your questions. If you are located outside of the greater Los Angeles area, Dr. Panossian does offer Skype consultation. This does not substitute for an in-person consultation, but for many living outside of Los Angeles, this a convenient first step.
Neurofibromatosis Type 1
Type 1 neurofibromatosis is the most common type with approximately 1 in 3000 people in the US having the condition. It is linked to a gene mutation, approximately 50 percent of individuals with the condition have no known family history.
Neurofibromatosis Type 2
Type 2 neurofibromatosis usually occurs within the central nervous system and the cranial nerves of the head and neck area. The main feature involves tumor formation along the 8th cranial nerve, called acoustic neuromas.
This rare condition involves tumor formation on large peripheral nerves (such as the sciatic nerve) throughout the body. It differs from NF-2 in that there are no acoustic neuromas. There are also no skin findings in most cases.
Dr. Panossian has received the highest honor bestowed by the Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery Journal, the pre-eminent publication of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons. Read about his ground-breaking smile reanimation technique.
The mainstay of treatment, surgical excision is the primary intervention for neurofibromatosis. In simple terms, it involves surgically removing large tumors of the skin and underlying tissues through a traditional incision. However, there are many considerations in the treatment of individuals with neurofibromatosis. A strategy must be developed preoperatively for safe removal and for optimal results.
This newer treatment for neurofibromatosis targets the multitude of surface tumors that can occur in Type 1 NF. These tumors typically occur in patients who are in their 20’s and 30’s and continue to enlarge over time. They also multiply in number causing significant disfigurement in some people. Electrodesiccation is a treatment that destroys tumors of a certain size by the hundreds.
Plastic surgery is such a personal choice. It is important to have all the necessary information you need to make an informed decision…one that you will feel great about for a lifetime. That doesn’t mean picking just any plastic surgeon. We believe that your health and safety comes first. Everything else pales in comparison. Along with this assumption, plastic surgery does not have to be unnecessarily painful or uncomfortable. It should be a positive overall experience with a lifetime of happiness to be gained.
In our practice, we strive to make your experience nothing short of spectacular from the first consultation to your very last postoperative visit. Dr. Panossian and his staff are available to answer any and all of your questions throughout this process so that you leave with nothing short of a 5-star experience in every way.