A schwannoma is a tumour that starts in the nerve sheath. This is the tissue that covers the nerves.
Nerves are a part of the central nervous system and go all over the body. The tissue around the nerves is called the nerve sheath.
If cancer starts in this nerve-sheath tissue, this is a schwannoma. Schwannomas are usually not cancerous (malignant).
Schwannomas can start in the nerve-sheath tissue anywhere in the body. Some of the most common areas for schwannomas to start are the vestibular nerve in the brain which controls balance and the sacral plexus, nerves in the lower back, near the spinal cord.
At The Christie, the neuro-oncology team treat tumours that start in the brain.