Benign Osteoma

Osteomas are benign head tumors made of bone. They’re usually found in the head or skull, but they can also be found in the neck. While osteomas are not cancerous, they can sometimes cause headaches, sinus infections, hearing issues or vision problems – however, many benign osteomas don’t require treatment at all. If treatment is needed, your doctor may prescribe surgery, pain relievers, or other minimally invasive techniques to provide relief.

Overview

Overview

Symptoms

Osteoma symptoms are rare. If you have a benign head tumor or skull tumor, your symptoms may include:

  • Headaches
  • Sinus infections
  • Hearing or vision problems

Keep in mind that having a headache, sinus infection, or another common health issue does not necessarily mean you have osteoid osteoma – but if you’re concerned about a possible tumor or are experiencing painful symptoms, make an appointment with your doctor right away.

Diagnosis

There are three different ways your doctor can make an osteoma diagnosis.

These include:

  • Routine examine – Your doctor will ask you questions about your symptoms and perform a physical exam to check for osteomas.
  • CT scan – Also known as a CAT scan, this diagnostic test produces high-resolution pictures of the insides of your head and neck. Similar to an X-Ray but more powerful, a CT scan reveals the location of a benign osteoma so your doctor can see its size and placement within the body.
  • Bone scan – A bone scan is an imaging test that uses a small, safe amount of radioactive dye as a tracer to locate osteomas in the head, skull or neck.

Once your doctor diagnoses a benign osteoma, they’ll discuss the best osteoma treatment options for your unique situation.

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Treatment Options

Treatment Options

Dr. Amin Kassam, Vice President of Neurosciences at Aurora Health Care, explains the Expanded Endonasal Approach, a minimally invasive surgical technique.

If you have an osteoma but it’s not causing any symptoms, your doctor may recommend leaving it alone. But if you’re in pain or it’s noticeable on your face, your osteoma treatment options include:

  • Surgery to remove the benign head tumor. In some cases, your doctor may be able to remove the tumor by going through the nostrils using the Expanded Endonasal Approach (EEA), a minimally invasive surgical technique that gives you a shorter hospital stay, faster recovery and no scarring. 
  • Over-the-counter pain relievers.
  • Percutaneous radiofrequency ablation: This procedure uses radiofrequency waves to pulverize the tumor and prevent it from growing back.

Our team of head and neck specialists will create an effective, customized treatment plan that is minimally disruptive and offers the fastest recovery time possible. Treatment for benign osteoma is available at Aurora clinics and hospitals in Milwaukee, Sheboygan, Green Bay, and throughout Eastern Wisconsin.

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