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4 cm ararchnoid cyst that has tripled in size in one year


I'm an otherwise healthy 46 year-old Canadian male who has been diagnosed with an arachnoid cyst.  One year ago it was discovered at just under 2 cm, located between the right lobe and the skull.  I was referred to a neurosurgeon, though I was never contacted.  My latest CT and MRI's show that it has almost tripled in size though my current family physician does not seem very concerned about my symptoms which are getting progressively worse.
Last year I had two large benign cysts removed from my scalp which were causing me much pain and pressure on the top of my head.  My doctor said that they were not causing me pain, but once they were removed, I could feel immediate relief.
Over the last year, I have been experiencing severe head/ neck aches with "shooting" pains radiating from my skull, down to my neck.  The pain is so bad that I get nauseated and I feel that there are behavioural changes as well: paranoia, anger, etc.  I now have lack of sensation in the fingers of my right hand and I am starting to drop things.  My doctor is adamant that it is not the arachnoid cyst and that perhaps my symptoms are from a "pinched nerve".  I have been referred to a pain clinic and my doctor has again reluctantly referred me to another neurosurgeon (as apparently, the last referral was 'lost').  I am currently on Lyrica, but cannot tolerate the side effects.  Could I please have your opinion?
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Avatar universal
The symptoms of archnoid cysts depend upon the location and size of the cyst. Typical symptoms of an arachnoid cyst around the brain are headache, nausea and vomiting, seizures, hearing and visual disturbances, vertigo, and difficulties with balance and walking. Arachnoid cysts around the spinal cord compress the spinal cord and nerve roots and cause symptoms such as progressive back and leg pain and tingling or numbness in the legs or arms.

The treatment of cysts depends mostly upon the location and size of the cyst. If the cyst is small, not disturbing surrounding tissue, and not causing symptoms, some doctors refrain from treatment. Microneurosurgical techniques and endoscopic tools  allow for minimally invasive surgery, so doctors opt for surgical removal of the membranes of the cyst or open the cyst so its fluid can drain into the cerebrospinal fluid and get absorbed when necessary. Untreated arachnoid cysts may cause permanent severe neurological damage when progressive expansion of the cyst(s) or hemorrhage injures the brain or spinal cord. Symptoms usually resolve or improve with treatment. Please consult a neurosurgeon for the treatment. Hope this helps you. Take care and regards!
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Avatar universal
Thank you for your response--my problem is that I have very bad symptoms and seem not to be taken seriously.  I am losing balance and cannot hold things in my right hand now.  the pain is intolerable.  I have over 30 Advil daily.  My doctor was very reluctant to send me to a neurosurgeon; now I am on an 18 month waiting list to see the neurosurgeon!!!
Do you have any other suggestions?  I feel like I am being treated like I'm a nuissance while this is destroying my life.

Thank you so much,
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Avatar universal
I know this is a older post, but I too have an arachnoid cyst that was 8.8cm x 6.7cm, I would drop things with my right hand and had tingling, I was told that those are seizures, I would fall and trip over things that were not there. I had headaches and I even dragged my right foot for years, I did have a craniotomy fenestration a year ago and I still have headaches and drag my leg less than before, I am coming up on my yearly MRI to see if it is smaller. Neurosurgeons are not easy to deal with and get straight answers from, good luck and I hope you are feeling better.
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