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Posted On: 19 June 2022 12:36 pm
Updated On: 22 June 2022 04:19 pm

HMC surgeons remove brain tumor from wide-awake patient

Cassandra Pallagud
Cassandra Pallagud
Content Writer
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Hmc surgeons remove brain tumor patient awake

A team of neurosurgeons at Hamad Medical Corporation has successfully performed a highly specialized brain tumor removal procedure resection of a complex brain tumor, known as a Glioma. The procedure, the first of a kind in Qatar, was performed with intra-operative neuro-monitoring and neuropsychological support. The 40-year-old patient, who was wide-awake and conscious during the procedure, left the hospital, in good health, five days after the surgery.

The procedure, which involved using the latest MRI and 3-D brain mapping and imaging technology and lasted 5 hours, was performed by a team of 10 surgery professionals led by Dr. Ghaya Al-Rumaihi, Neurosurgery, and Neuro-intervention consultant, at HMC. The team comprised of Dr. Arun R. Sowran – Neurosurgery specialist, Dr. Kishor Kumar - Anesthesia consultant, Dr. John Berkins - neuropsychology consultant, Dr. Abdullah O. Olayyan, and Dr. Muhsin Khan – both resident physicians at the Neurosurgery Department, Mr. Mohammad Al Ghazu – brain electrophysiologist, in addition to surgery nursing team lead by Ms. Najlaa Fathi and Anesthesia technicians.

The surgery had to be performed with the patient conscious due to the fact that the tumor was so close to the lobe responsible for consciousness and speech in the brain, the patient needed to be kept interactive and responsive with the team, allowing the team to remove the tumor without inflicting any damage to critical areas of the brain.

Dr. Ghaya Al-Rumaihi
Dr. Ghaya Al-Rumaihi, Neurosurgery and Neuro-intervention consultant, HMC

Commenting on the procedure, Dr. Ghaya Al-Rumaihi said: ”Not only was the multidisciplinary medical team able to surgically remove the 2nd-degree tumor but also succeeded in reducing the epileptic seizures that the patient suffered as a result of this tumor while maintaining brain functional skills thus improving the patient’s life quality. We would like to thank the patient for their remarkable cooperation and responsiveness to the step-by-step probe of the brain's communicative and memory functionalities, using newly introduced intraoperative equipment for language and motor monitoring of the patient’s directly in their own mother tongue rather than having the monitoring data translated”.

Speaking on the details of the procedure, Dr. Ghaya Al-Rumaihi pointed out that the patient had been diagnosed with a tumor in the left lobe of the brain three years ago with subsequent low growth in size causing speech difficulties, episodes of epilepsy, and sudden left arm paralysis. The surgery had to be performed with the patient wide-awake in order to keep intraoperative monitoring of language and brain cognition functions and mitigate associated risks.

As for the technology used in the procedure, Dr. Ghaya stated that a high-tech GPS-guided 3-D system had been used to produce consecutive mappings to facilitate safe navigation in the area to be operated on without causing any damage to healthy brain cells.

“In preparation for the surgery, an initial evaluation of the patient’s neurological condition was made. The mode of the procedure has also been discussed and explained to the patient by the multidisciplinary medical team to ensure that the patient made a well-informed decision prior to such procedure and that the patient is comfortable with having to undergo the surgery fully conscious. In addition, a unipolar suction tube device to simultaneously drain fluids and blood was used. The device, which is used for the first time in surgery in Qatar, is equipped with a sensor in the forefront to retain the influx of nerve impulses to functional areas in the brain, Dr. Ghaya added. The patient remained conscious and alert for most of the duration of the procedure. He felt no pain as the surgeons mapped the brain and performed the resection. The mutual trust and confidence between the patient and the team of surgeons were key to the success of this high-precision procedure, Dr. Ghaya explained. Dr. Ghaya affirmed that neurosurgeons who single-handedly operate on similar cases, often fail to properly treat such complex cases. Only with the combined efforts and teamwork of a multidisciplinary medical team, we can ensure that patients get the comprehensive healthcare they need.

Dr. Ghaya concluded her message by saying: ”I have pride in HMC’s multidisciplinary approach in medical treatment, and in our achievements in treating complex neuro and cerebral cases in Qatar. I am confident that we, at HMC, combine state-of-the-art equipment and an international team of experts to perform the most complex neurosurgery procedures in Qatar. What inspires us is that our success in this surgery offers hope to other patients with similar conditions and can rid them and their family members of the trouble of traveling abroad for treatment”

Source and cover image credit: Press release