Neurospine Hospital & Revive Critical Care

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Stereotaxic Brain Surgery for Tumor and Functional Neurosurgery

Home / Stereotaxic Brain Surgery for Tumor and Functional Neurosurgery

What is Stereotaxic Brain Surgery

Stereotaxic Brain Biopsy is a common procedure that allows a neurosurgeon to diagnose a brain lesion. Performed in the operating room, the procedure involves the removal of a small piece of tissue, most commonly from the brain, but could include samples from the scalp, blood vessels or dura mater.
It is a minimally invasive procedure. It makes use of a three-dimensional coordinate system to accurately locate small targets within the brain and subsequent procedures such as stimulation, implantation , ablation etc. can be performed.

Procedure

You’ll lie on a bed that slides into the Gamma Knife machine, and your head frame will be attached securely to a helmet inside the machine.

You’ll have an intravenous (IV) tube that delivers fluids to your bloodstream to keep you hydrated during the day. A needle at the end of the IV is placed in a vein, most likely in your arm.

The time needed to complete the procedure may range from less than an hour to about four hours, depending on the size and shape of the target. During the procedure:

  • You won’t feel the radiation
  • You won’t hear any noise from the machine
  • You’ll be able to talk with the doctors via a microphone

How it works

The specialized equipment focuses many small beams of radiation on a tumor or other target. Each beam has very little effect on the tissue it passes through, but a targeted dose of radiation is delivered to the site where all the beams intersect.

The high dose of radiation delivered to the affected area causes tumors to shrink and blood vessels to close off over time following treatment, robbing the tumor of its blood supply.

The precision of stereotactic radiosurgery means there’s minimal damage to the healthy surrounding tissues. In most cases, radiosurgery has a lower risk of side effects compared with other types of traditional surgery or radiation therapy.

Benefits

A needle biopsy makes it possible for neurosurgeons to reach the deepest recesses of the brain, allowing them to obtain a specimen in order to make a diagnosis in a relatively safe manner. Hospitalization is short and, at most, requires an overnight stay. Some patients are treated on an outpatient basis.

What are the risks?

The biggest risk is bleeding in the tumor and brain from the surgery. Bleeding can cause anything from a mild headache up to a stroke, coma, or even death. Additional risks can include headache from the surgical site, infection, and seizures. Additional risks can be posed by the anesthesia itself. To minimize risk, we ensure that a patient’s medical condition is optimized before beginning surgery, use of intraoperative antibiotics, stop all blood thinners including aspirin before surgery, and keep everyone overnight in the hospital for observation at the completion of surgery.

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