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Why brain tumors are removed while awake and how the operation takes place

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Why brain tumors are removed while awake and how the operation takes place

Awake surgey surgery is a procedure that takes place under local anesthesia, with the patient awake and conscious, used to treat some neurological conditions, including brain tumors and epilepsy, when the affected area is close to brain regions that control functions such as vision, movement or speech.

Brain surgeries to treat some neurological conditions, including brain tumors and epilepsy, can be performed while awakewith the patient precisely awake and conscious during the operation. This type of procedure, called Awake brain surgery (awake surgey)takes place under local anesthesia and allows interventions on the brain using the so-called cortical mappinga real map identifying brain areas involved in the noble functions of language, motility and sensitivity.

Awake brain surgery is in fact a procedure that is performed when tumors or cerebral vascular malformations to be removed are located near areas of the brain that control functions such as vision, movement or speech, allowing the surgeon to know exactly where these areas are and preserve them. Clearly, thinking about brain surgery while awake is scary, but being able to be alert and conscious during this type of procedure is an essential part of the operation. Let’s see why.

What is awake brain surgery and how does it work

Awake brain surgery (awake brain surgey) is a neurosurgical procedure that takes place under local anesthesia, with the patient awake and conscious, used to treat specific conditions, such as brain tumors and epilepsywhen the affected area is close to brain regions that control functions such as vision, movement or speech.

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Brain surgery with an awake patient allows you to know exactly where the different brain functions are located through cortical mapping (brain mapping), allowing the areas involved in language, motility and sensory functions to be preserved and thus minimizing the surgical risk.

During the surgerythey explain the specialists -, the neurosurgeon asks the patient questions and asks for the execution of simple and complex movements, so as to monitor the functioning of the eloquent areas (the areas of the brain responsible for controlling sight, movement and/or speech) during surgical resection”. The responses received and movements performed while monitoring these areas cause it to reduce during removalsignificantly increases the risk of damage to functional areas of the brain.

When brain surgery is necessary with the patient awake

Awake brain surgery is used when the neurological condition being treated, such as a brain tumor or brain malformation, is located near areas of the brain which perform noble functions of language, motility and sensory. The procedure “allows the treatment of tumors and cerebral vascular malformationssuch as gliomas, cavernous angiomas and cerebral metastases, but also of neurological pathologies such as temporal lobe epilepsy, focal cortical dysplasia, polymicrogyria” indicate the specialists.

Before the operation, the patient is given local anesthesia. In the central part of the surgery (the one in which the tumor or malformation is removed) the patient remains awake, so as to be able to monitor their neurological status as accurately as possible”.

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What are the advantages and risks of the procedure

The awake brain surgey, brain surgery while awake, allows you to constantly monitor the function of brain areas which control functions such as movement, speech and sensitivity, allowing the surgeon to preserve them during the operation.

People who have brain tumors or seizure centers (epileptic outbreaks) close to functional brain tissuewhose condition was once deemed inoperable, may consider awake brain surgery to reduce complications and risk of damage to functional brain tissuehighlight the US Mayo Clinic, one of the most important neurology and neurosurgery centers in the world – . Awake brain surgery can help reduce safely measure the size of brain tumors growing, prolonging and improving the quality of life”.

As with any surgery, brain surgery with the patient awake presents potential risks and complications, such as bleeding, brain swelling, infections, brain damage and death. Other surgical complications can include problems with vision, seizures, muscle weakness, and problems with memory and thinking.

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