Neurofibromatosis is in fact, a genetic syndrome that causes tumors to form on nerve tissue. These tumors can mature anywhere in your nervous system, including your spinal cord, brain, and nerves. How many of you know that Neurofibromatosis is habitually spotted in childhood or early adulthood.
The tumors are typically noncancerous (benign), but for some, you never know what happens. Every so often it can become cancerous (malignant). Symptoms are every so often mild. Nevertheless, complications of neurofibromatosis can include learning impairment, hearing loss, loss of vision, heart, and blood vessel (cardiovascular) problems, and extreme pain.
When neurofibromatosis causes large tumors or tumors that pressurize on a nerve, surgery can actually lessen symptoms. Some people may benefit from other therapies, such as stereotactic radiosurgery. There can also be medications to control pain.
These innocuous spots are common in many people. Having more than six cafe au lait spots is a strong hint of NF1. They are typically present at birth or can also appear during the first years of life.
Freckling in the armpits or groin area.
Freckling usually appears by ages 3 to 5. Freckles are smaller than cafe au lait spots and have a tendency to occur in clusters in skin folds.
Miniature bumps on the iris of the eye (Lisch nodules). These harmless nodules can't simply be seen and don't really disturb your vision.
Soft, pea-sized bumps on or under the skin (neurofibromas).
These benign tumors typically grow in or under the skin, but can also grow inside the body.
From time to time, growth will involve multiple nerves (plexiform neurofibroma). Plexiform neurofibromas, when located on the face, can cause defacement. Neurofibromas may upsurge with age.
Abnormal bone growth and a deficiency in bone mineral density can be the reason for bone deformities such as a bowed lower leg or curved spine (scoliosis).
The tumor on the optic nerve (optic glioma). These tumors usually seem to be visible by age 3, seldom in late childhood and adolescence, and practically never in adults.
Impaired thinking skills are common in children with NF1 but are habitually mild. Often there is an explicit learning disability, such as a problem with reading or mathematics. Hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and Attention-deficit are pretty common.
One can have larger than average head size. Children with NF1 are likely to have a larger than average head size due to increased brain volume.