Angiofibroma of nasopharynx in children, also known as juvenile nasopharyngeal angiofibroma (JNA), is a relatively rare benign tumor of the nose. Unfortunately, it’s an aggressive tumor that can spread into the neighboring structures resulting in serious complications. But when it’s completely removed, the prognosis is generally good – and, indeed, it is good news for parents with children affected by the disease.
Researchers have yet to identify the risk factors associated with JNA. Patients typically come from diverse ethnic, racial and geographical backgrounds.
But the rare tumor is almost exclusively seen in adolescent boys ranging in age from 7 to 19 years. It’s also considered rare for another reason – only 0.05% of all reported head and neck tumors are JNA. It’s also hardly known to occur in girls within the same age range in particular and in females in general.
Parents, if you’re blaming yourself or others for your son’s condition, you shouldn’t for this reason. The best thing to do is find the best doctor specializing in JNA and take it from there.
Causes and Symptoms
As with the risk factors, researchers have yet to identify definitive causes for JNA. The widely held theory, nonetheless, points to hormonal influence for the growth of the tumor. As a boy enters puberty, the hormonal changes may contribute to the tumor’s development; the androgen hormones are thought to be behind the mechanism.
While the causes are as yet unknown, the symptoms of JNA are observable. Keep in mind that many of these symptoms are also present in other illnesses and, thus, the importance of a medical consultation cannot be overemphasized.
In some cases, the tumor can spread into the brain tissue resulting in neurological symptoms. Anemia resulting from severe bleeding in the tumor may also happen.
Your doctor will perform a series of medical examinations including laboratory and imaging tests to arrive at a definitive diagnosis. As with all types of tumors, you may want to consider a second opinion.
Early detection is important in the effective treatment of nasopharynx angiofibroma. But the successful and complete removal of the tumor is even more important in its treatment.
Aside from complete surgical excision, your doctor will also consider other treatment options for your child. These include radiation therapy and arterial embolization, which have their share of pros and cons for serious consideration. Your doctor may suggest one or more of these treatments depending on your child’s condition, among other factors.
Children can enjoy a full life after JNA treatment, thanks to the good prognosis. Parents, take note that the prognosis itself can be affected by complications and, in rare cases, by the transformation of the benign tumor into a malignant tumor.
If you wonder if your child suffers from angiofibroma of nasopharynx, it is suggested to consult an ENT Specialist for the appropriate ENT services as soon as possible. HK ENT Specialist Ltd. is a professional Hong Kong based ENT clinic centre to offer ENT Services. Please contact us for an appointment at 3100 0555.
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