Thank you for your time. I have a mass in the left side of my neck that lies just below the jawline, in front of the ear. I see an ENT regularly, so when I was in to see him I pointed out the mass, and he said it was not normal. He did an FNA, and that yielded very little. It said the aspirate showed no malignant cells. It is a cyst or benign tumour. He did say that the aspirate doesn't get everything, so malignancy is slight. But, the thoughts were branchial cleft cyst, schwonnoma tumour, or who knows.
I am scheduled for surgery on Nov 21. My ENT, whom I have an excellent relationship. said he wants his partner to help. He said it is near the carotid artery and other significant nerves. Please, if you can tell me the possibilites, and if I should not have surgery, and if I do how risky of losing nerve function. I am extra scared as last time I had surgery with general anesthesia (heart) I woke up during the surgery. I could hear and feel everything, but couldn't move. To say it was a nightmare is an understatement. Any advice is great!
It is tough to not be scared before surgery...especially after the experiences you have already had. It sounds like your surgeon is being methodical in his work up. Imaging and FNA can better characterize the lesion. Pathology slides can be reviewed at different institutions if a second opinion on the biopsy is being considered. Having two surgeons working together during a procedure is not uncommon. Obviously, there are many important structures within the neck. Your surgeon is trained to protect them. The risks for injury to the nerves and vessels are low, but they are real and that is why he discussed them with you. If you are concerned about having the procedure, you can always get a second opinion. That way another set of eyes can review your history, physical, imaging, and pathology. No recommendation is appropriate unless all of these pieces are examined. If you have a good relationship with your ent, you should definitely discuss your fears and concerns. Best wishes.
I'd get a second opinion or even third opinion before opting for surgery. And I understand the fears about surgery, I woke up during a procedure I had last year. It's not fun at all. Though I had another surgery months later and it all went great, no problems at all.
How long have you had the mass? Did it come on suddenly or gradually?
I found a large lump just behind and below my ear last March. I hadn't noticed it before, although looking back the earring on that ear, was pushing into the back of my neck, and I couldn't figure why. It was diagonised as a Benign Licheroid Keratoses on the Parotid Gland. My doctor said it was a slow growing tumor, and because of the size 1inch across) and position, he had to schedule a long surgery, to avoid all the nerves in the face. The surgery was successful and no nerves in the face were damaged, but the nerves to the ear lobe and above was. He said I probably won't get any feeling back. That was almost 10 months ago and it is still numb, as well as the lower jaw. I am very thankful I found it when I did, and that I had a experienced surgeon, who was able to avoid nerve damage. Do a lot of research and talking to both surgeons, and have faith in them.
This site complies with the HONcode standard for trustworthy health information.
The Content on this Site is presented in a summary fashion, and is intended to be used for educational and entertainment purposes only. It is not intended to be and should not be interpreted as medical advice or a diagnosis of any health or fitness problem, condition or disease; or a recommendation for a specific test, doctor, care provider, procedure, treatment plan, product, or course of action. Med Help International, Inc. is not a medical or healthcare provider and your use of this Site does not create a doctor / patient relationship. We disclaim all responsibility for the professional qualifications and licensing of, and services provided by, any physician or other health providers posting on or otherwise referred to on this Site and/or any Third Party Site. Never disregard the medical advice of your physician or health professional, or delay in seeking such advice, because of something you read on this Site. We offer this Site AS IS and without any warranties. By using this Site you agree to the following Terms and Conditions. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your physician or 911 immediately.