Ms. Wilcox's tumor was a classic case. She had few symptoms early on, and even those problems were mistaken for blocked sinuses.
"For several months, I could not breathe through the right side of my nose," recalled the resident of Goldthwaite, a town of less than 2,000 in the heart of Texas' Hill Country. "I felt a fullness, but I didn't take that as something terrible. I never believed it would be a malignant tumor."
She began to suspect a problem when her symptoms persisted, then worsened. When she developed swelling above her right eye and a red streak on her face, family members took her to the nearest emergency room, where an ear, nose and throat specialist identified the tumor.
Her doctor told her it needed to be removed and recommended Dr. Pete Batra, associate professor of otolaryngology – head and neck surgery and co-director of the Comprehensive Skull Base Program at UT Southwestern Medical Center. Dr. Batra specializes in minimally invasive approaches to the skull base and innovative management strategies for chronic rhinosinusitis, or inflammation of the sinuses.
Removing tumors such as Ms. Wilcox's from the base of the skull can be a challenge, Dr. Batra said, because they often grow precariously close to critical cranial nerves, blood vessels and eye sockets. Extensive experience and special skills are needed to remove them without damaging nearby structures like the eye and brain.
"Traditionally, tumors of the sinuses have been removed by open craniofacial resection. This involves making incisions on the face and a craniotomy, which is removal of the forehead bone flap by a neurosurgeon," Dr. Batra said.
With the advances in sinus endoscopy, however, many tumors can now be removed directly through the nose, avoiding the need for facial incisions or a craniotomy. Complications are decreased and recovery is faster.
While not all patients are candidates for the minimally invasive techniques, Ms. Wilcox was, Dr. Batra said.
"I was told I might have to give up my right eye to the disease, but of course, none of that happened. Dr. Batra removed it piece by piece through my right nostril with no major facial scarring," she said. "To me Dr. Batra is a miracle doctor. I would not be living now if this tumor was still bleeding."
Instead, she'll celebrate her 85th birthday on Christmas Day.
In addition to sinus tumors, the Comprehensive Skull Base Program at UT Southwestern addresses more than two dozen types of skull-base related conditions, including cerebrospinal fluid leak, glomus tumors, meningioma, neurofibromatosis, pituitary neoplasms, sarcoma, squamous cell carcinoma, and van Hippel Landau disease.
A multidisciplinary team of physicians from a range of specialties – otolaryngology – head and neck surgery, neurological surgery, neuro-ophthalmology, neuro-oncology, radiation oncology, interventional radiology and pathology – carefully coordinate the care and treatment of patients using the latest techniques and technology.
Visit http://www.utsouthwestern.org/skullbase to learn more about clinical services in the Comprehensive Skull Base Program at UT Southwestern.
This news release is available on our World Wide Web home page at http://www.utsouthwestern.edu/home/news/index.html
To automatically receive news releases from UT Southwestern via e-mail, subscribe at www.utsouthwestern.edu/receivenews
Russell Rian | EurekAlert!
PET identifies which prostate cancer patients can benefit from salvage radiation treatment
05.12.2017 | Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging
Designing a golden nanopill
01.12.2017 | University of Texas at Austin, Texas Advanced Computing Center
MPQ scientists achieve long storage times for photonic quantum bits which break the lower bound for direct teleportation in a global quantum network.
Concerning the development of quantum memories for the realization of global quantum networks, scientists of the Quantum Dynamics Division led by Professor...
Researchers have developed a water cloaking concept based on electromagnetic forces that could eliminate an object's wake, greatly reducing its drag while...
Tiny pores at a cell's entryway act as miniature bouncers, letting in some electrically charged atoms--ions--but blocking others. Operating as exquisitely sensitive filters, these "ion channels" play a critical role in biological functions such as muscle contraction and the firing of brain cells.
To rapidly transport the right ions through the cell membrane, the tiny channels rely on a complex interplay between the ions and surrounding molecules,...
The miniaturization of the current technology of storage media is hindered by fundamental limits of quantum mechanics. A new approach consists in using so-called spin-crossover molecules as the smallest possible storage unit. Similar to normal hard drives, these special molecules can save information via their magnetic state. A research team from Kiel University has now managed to successfully place a new class of spin-crossover molecules onto a surface and to improve the molecule’s storage capacity. The storage density of conventional hard drives could therefore theoretically be increased by more than one hundred fold. The study has been published in the scientific journal Nano Letters.
Over the past few years, the building blocks of storage media have gotten ever smaller. But further miniaturization of the current technology is hindered by...
With innovative experiments, researchers at the Helmholtz-Zentrums Geesthacht and the Technical University Hamburg unravel why tiny metallic structures are extremely strong
Light-weight and simultaneously strong – porous metallic nanomaterials promise interesting applications as, for instance, for future aeroplanes with enhanced...
11.12.2017 | Event News
08.12.2017 | Event News
07.12.2017 | Event News
14.12.2017 | Health and Medicine
14.12.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
14.12.2017 | Life Sciences