Accessibility

I want to find

Close

What Are Malignant Peripheral Nerve Sheath Tumors?

Malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumors, also known as neurofibrosarcomas, are found in the protective lining, or myelin sheath, surrounding the peripheral (outside) nerves of the spinal cord — the nerves that reach out to the rest of the body. These rare cancerous tumors occur most commonly in the muscle, fat, nerves, and other soft tissue of the torso, arms, or legs.

What Are the Causes of Malignant Peripheral Nerve Sheath Tumors?

The exact causes of these tumors aren’t known, but they begin when a cell in the sheath develops a DNA mutation. They grow and divide much faster than normal. The excess of cells forms invasive, spreadable tumors.

Malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumors are most common in young adults and middle-aged adults, and more than half are found in people who have neurofibromatosis 1 (a non-cancerous condition that causes bone deformities).

Symptoms of Malignant Peripheral Nerve Sheath Tumors

In the early stages, malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumors may not have many symptoms. As a tumor grows and presses on the nerves, symptoms may include:

  • Pain
  • Weakness
  • A growing lump or mass under the skin

Diagnosis and Testing

Diagnosing malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumors may include:

These same tests may be done to assess whether cancer has spread.

Treatment of Malignant Peripheral Nerve Sheath Tumors

These tumors are first attacked with surgery to remove them if possible, then with a combination of chemotherapy and radiation.

Patient Stories

  • “Miraculously, I regained all movement and speech”

    David
    Read More
  • Thanks to spine surgery at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Hamilton, a physician can walk without pain.

    Robert
    Read More
  • “It was like turning on a light switch. Literally the next day, my voice was almost back to normal.”

    Mike
    Read More

Patient Stories

  • Watch Testimonial
  • Watch Testimonial
  • Watch Testimonial
Cooperman Barnabas Medical Center
94 Old Short Hills Road
Livingston, NJ 07039
(973) 322-5000
View
Monmouth Medical Center
300 Second Avenue
Long Branch, NJ 07740
(732) 222-5200
View
Monmouth Medical Center Southern Campus
600 River Avenue
Lakewood, NJ 08701
(732) 363-1900
View
Community Medical Center
99 Highway 37 West
Toms River, NJ 08755
(732) 557-8000
View
Newark Beth Israel Medical Center
201 Lyons Avenue at Osborne Terrace
Newark, NJ 07112
(973) 926-7000
View
Children's Hospital of New Jersey at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center
201 Lyons Avenue at Osborne Terrace
Newark, NJ 07112
(973) 926-7000
View
The Bristol-Myers Squibb Children's Hospital at RWJUH
200 Somerset Street
New Brunswick, NJ 08901
(732) 828-3000
View
RWJ University Hospital Hamilton
1 Hamilton Health Place
Hamilton, NJ 08690
(609) 586-7900
View
Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital
1 Robert Wood Johnson Place
New Brunswick, NJ 08901
(732) 828-3000
View
RWJ University Hospital Rahway
865 Stone Street
Rahway, NJ 07065
(732) 381-4200
View
RWJ University Hospital Somerset
110 Rehill Avenue
Somerville, NJ 08876
(908) 685-2200
View

Neuroscience Treatment & Care

offered at these locations in your neighborhood

View All Locations