Glomus Jugulare Tumor Presentation and Management: A Case Study

Mark C. Coles


J Neurosci Nurs. 2004;36(4) 

In This Article

Abstract and Introduction

Glomus jugulare tumors are rare, normally benign, paragangliomas located in and around the jugular foramen at the base of the skull. They may cause significant lower cranial nerve deficits due to mass effect, and as part of the chromaffin cell system (including pheochromocytomas), they may also actively secrete catecholamines. Resection, while frequently difficult, is the treatment of choice. Nurses caring for patients with glomus jugulare tumors need to be skilled in recognizing lower cranial nerve deficits and complications that may arise related to inappropriate catecholamine release or due to disruption of cerebral venous return by tumor or surgery.

Caring for patients with glomus jugulare tumors presents unique challenges from both neurosurgical and nursing perspectives. This article discusses the typical presentation, diagnosis, preoperative planning, surgical techniques, and postoperative management involved in the care of such patients.