BENGALURU: Doctors at city-based Sagar Apollo Hospital gave a fresh lease of life to a 27-year-old woman with a rare awake craniotomy surgery, where they removed a brain tumour measuring 4cm from her eloquent cortex (speech area) at the left posterior temporal lobe of the brain. She was operated on when awake and fully conscious, although medicines were given to ensure that she doesn’t feel any pain.
A surgical team led by Dr Murali Mohan S, senior consultant neurosurgeon and head of neurosciences, Sagar Hospitals, and an anaesthesia team led by Dr Gayathri P, senior consultant neuro anaesthetist and neuro intensivist, performed the surgery.
Dr Mohan said since the surgery was done on the eloquent cortex, they had to ensure that her speech and memory were not affected, so she was kept awake by playing the music of her choice, constantly communicating with her, and asking her to do some maths all through the surgery.
“While brain tumour surgeries usually take seven hours, this surgery was completed in 3.5 hours, as it is not easy to keep the patient awake for long while performing such surgeries. She could walk within two hours after the surgery, which was done on Friday. She was discharged on Monday and advised to go back to work after a week,” he said.
Preethi (name changed), the only daughter of aged parents residing in Udupi, lived alone in Bengaluru. Though she was diagnosed with a brain tumour seven years ago, she kept deferring the surgery, fearing she would lose her speech or memory. While she suffered repeated seizures due to the tumour, and panic attacks due to fear of living with it, she visited a number of doctors to check if the surgery could be done without affecting her speech or memory, before she contacted Dr Mohan.