Having surgery can be an incredibly scary experience for anyone that has to go through it. Patients fear the pain of having it done, as well as the possibility of something going wrong during the surgery that could cause a reduction in their quality of life, or even death. Brain and skull surgeries are especially risky because of how delicate the area is, and how important it is to the proper function of the body.
While there are many diseases and illnesses that require brain surgery, they can be divided into three main categories; problems in the brain tissue, brain blood flow, and cerebrospinal fluid. Problems in the brain tissue typically reflect brain cancer, infections, and swelling. Blood flow issues can lead to hemorrhages and internal bleeding. Finally, changes in the cerebrospinal fluid can point to infection, or more rare disease like hydrocephalus, which is a build-up of spinal fluid in the brain cavities.
Fortunately, advancements in medical technology are making brain and skull surgeries easier on surgeons and patients alike. The ability to see more hidden parts of the body, and be less invasive is increasing the effectiveness and decreasing the fear in having a procedure done.
Technology Aiding Surgeons
With all the complexities of the human anatomy, there are many things within a body that a surgeon can’t easily see, or can’t see at all. The use of video and infrared lights are helping surgeons get a clearer picture of what is going on inside the body they are operating on. The information created by the infrared sensors can be monitored via GPS.
This technology allows the surgeon to even pick up on things that the naked eye couldn’t see if it was staring right at it. In addition, the GPS feature allows an advanced computer to guide the surgeon through difficult parts of the surgery. This can be compared to a radar guiding a pilot through rough skies during a storm.
This especially helps during brain surgery because of all the unseen things that go on inside the brain. One wrong move by the surgeon could seriously affect the life of a patient, or could even kill them. Technology like this is allowing doctors and surgeons to see even more clearly what is going on inside the brain, and is leading to more insightful and successful surgeries.
Technology Aiding Patients
Furthermore, technology is also making having a procedure on the brain less scary for patients. Traditional brain procedures can cause trauma on the head area, as well as take a long time to complete and recover from.
The traditional procedure, a craniotomy, involves making a rather large incision and sawing the skull open to reveal the brain and attempt to rectify the problems. The gruesomeness of this procedure scares patients, and leading skull and brain physicians like Dr. Hrayr Shahinian have opted for more technologically advanced procedures in recent years. The use of the endoscopy and other micro instruments are having a great effect on these risky surgeries.
An endoscopy is a small tube with a light and a camera attached to it, which is traditionally used to find and rectify problems in the digestive tract. However, these are now being combined with smaller instruments to change the way brain and skull surgeries are done. This allows Dr. Hryar Shahinian and other physicians to perform surgeries that are minimally invasive, meaning they use much smaller incisions.
The benefits of minimally invasive surgeries cut out many of the fears that people have about surgery. The incisions made on the patient prove to be much smaller, which causes less bleeding during the surgery. Also, smaller incisions mean less pain, during the recovery. Finally, these procedures can be done without opening up the skull, which drastically decreases operating and recovery times; helping people get back to normal even faster. The technological advancements in this field is resulting in overall lower mortality rates for brain and skull surgery patients.