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December 1964

The Pathology of Acoustic Neuromas

Arch Otolaryngol. 1964;80(6):605-616. doi:10.1001/archotol.1964.00750040621004

Acoustic neuromas are benign encapsulated tumors which, after numerous stormy controversies, are now generally agreed to arise as the result of neoplastic proliferation of the neurilemmal or Schwannian nerve sheath cells of the eighth cranial nerve, usually the vestibular division, within the internal acoustic meatus. The currently preferred names for this specific nerve sheath tumor, as Stout has termed it, are "neurilemmoma" or "benign schwannoma."

The following brief consideration of the history and cellular origin of this group of neoplasms, the incidence and sites of predilection of intracranial and intraspinal neurilemmomas, and the gross and generously illustrated microscopic appearance of acoustic neuromas are intended to round out this monograph dealing with an important, benign, and operable intracranial tumor.

History and Cellular Origin  These tumors were called "neuromas" by Virchow who recognized them only as a specific form of acoustic nerve tumor. Verocay described the peculiar bodies formed within these lesions

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