Life Expectancy With Nerve Sheath Tumor

Nerve sheath tumor refers to a specific type of tumor that arises from neoplasm nervous system consisting mainly of myelin i.e. a layer across the neuron’s axon surrounding one’s nerves. On the other side, in case of peripheral neural sheath tumors, they originate from the human’s peripheral nervous system i.e. extends outside of the central nervous system consisting of spinal cord and brain. Peripheral neural sheath may be of two different type i.e. malignant and benign types of sheaths.

Life Expectancy With Nerve Sheath Tumor

Life Expectancy as Per the Tumor’s Size and Location

Malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumors are of aggressive ones and hence, chance related to one’s life expectancy post diagnosis depend mainly exact location and size of the tumor. Accordingly, patients with small tumor often tend to survive for a relatively long time as compared to others with large tumor. Moreover, people with tumors in neck and head areas survive relatively less as compared to individuals with tumors in legs and arms.

Life Expectancy as Per the Tumor’s Phase

Malignant type of peripheral nerve sheath tumors when treated at the initial phase have relatively good life expectancy as compared to the phase, when tumor grows or recurs even after initial treatment and spread to other parts of the patients’ body. According to research study conducted on 140 patients, about 26 percent of total individuals diagnosed with the problem are living about 10 years after their diagnosis and treatment at the initial phase. Among the patients developing metastasis i.e. recurrence of the tumor, 8 percent of individuals are living about 10 years post the initial diagnosis.

General Prognosis or Life Expectancy With The Tumor

In general, malignant type of peripheral nerve sheath tumors has relatively higher potential to metastatic issues and thereby, results in poor life expectancy. Research report revealed that long-term outcomes of the problem vary largely across different series with life expectancy of 5-year ranging from only 15 percent to up to 50 percent.

Doctors have derived most of the data on clinic-pathologic factors from different retrospective single institutional studies analyzing about 100 patients to 200 patients. Large size of tumor i.e. more than 5cm has consistently remained advertised prognostic factor across different series. Along with this, you will find other related factors, like location of the tumor, its grade, surgical marginal status, differentiation of heterologous rhabdomyoblastic and local recurrence.

Key Aspects On Nerve Sheath Tumor

  • Malignant type of peripheral nerve sheath tumor, as the name highlights it develops within the individual’s protective lining responsible to cover nerves.
  • At the initial phase, you will find a mass or lump as the first symptom, which later on, increases in its size and may cause a tingling sensation or pain.
  • Doctors consider this as an aggressive type of tumor because of the fact it has only 65 percent chance related to its re-grow post-surgery i.e. recurrence.
  • Malignant type of tumor has only 40percent chance related to its spreading to many distant parts of a human body i.e. metastasis commonly to lungs.
  • Doctors start with treatment of this problem based on surgery to remove the tumor as much as they can.
  • In addition, radiation therapy is recommendable to reduce your chances related to the tumor’s recurrence.
  • Along with this, if you require treatment of metastasis or surgery fails to remove the tumor completely, patients may have to undergo with chemotherapy procedure.
  • Malignant type of tumor takes place rarely i.e. only in 0.001percent of the total population, while about 25 percent to 50percent of them have a common genetic condition referred as type 1 neurofibromatosis.


Therefore, malignant type of nerve sheath tumors incorporates very poor life expectancy i.e. only 5 years period. Only way to live with the issue is to undergo proper checkup of your health condition and follow a healthy lifestyle. These steps help you to manage your symptoms and let you to live relatively higher numbers of years as possible.

Also Read:

Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:December 11, 2018

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