By far, the field of neurosurgery is considered as the scientific avant-garde. However, that doesn’t mean that neurosurgeons have nothing left to learn or the science of neurosurgery can’t go further. The fact is that neurosurgery is continuously advancing and especially in recent years, the progress has sped up. Here are five most significant recent advances in neurosurgery, which might mean a lot to you.
1. Gamma Knife Radiosurgery
This is a kind of stereotactic brain surgery harnessing the power of microscopically targeted beams of gamma rays to send strong doses of radiation to particular sections of the brain. The beams are sent via a helmet that is attached surgically to the skull and attuned to target abnormalities like lesions and small tumors. Because of its precise nature, gamma knife is not used for larger lesions or tumors.
Due to its minimally invasive nature and comparatively low risk of complications and side effects, gamma knife is recently getting popular, though it has been in practice for a while.
2. Endonasal Surgery
Nasal passages are used as entry points to the brain or cervical spine procedures by endoscopic neurosurgeries. These surgeries don’t need an incision through the skull; instead, small instruments attached to the end of a probe are used. For tumor excision and biopsies, endoscopic procedures are perfect to reach the base of the skull or top of the spine, though they are not indicated for tumors or other abnormalities in the brain.
3. Minimally Invasive Spinal Surgery
Minimally invasive spinal surgeries, just like endoscopic neurosurgeries, use very small incisions and devices guided via a flexible probe. They can be used for surgeries at any part of the spinal cord. This procedure too, like other minimally invasive surgeries, promise quicker recovery times as well as fewer complications, though they come with some serious risks, though very low.
4. Minimally Invasive Intracranial Surgery
The same underlying principles are applied in minimally invasive intracranial surgery as that in minimally invasive spinal surgeries, like guided instruments, small incisions and least tissue damage. This surgery is indicated for small tumors and other abnormalities that can be accessed easily through tactically placed entry points in the skull. Side effects, risks and limitations are the same too. However, it’s typically preferable to open cranial procedures, which carry a lot of serious risks.
5. Deep Brain Stimulation
DBS or Deep Brain Stimulation is a non-surgical treatment that has a big promise for some symptoms of Parkinson’s disease, including rigidity, stiffness, walking problems, poor motility and tremors. It can also be used in the treatment of dystonia and essential tremor. A “brain pacemaker” is used in DBS which is implanted in brain and delivers low-voltage currents regularly to the thalamus and other movement-related sections of the brain. With this, abnormal signals affecting control and movement are interrupted, thereby lessening symptoms, though the progression of the disease is not reversed.
Dr. Armando Torres is an expert neurosurgeon who is well-known for the best treatment and care he gives to his patients. Visit his site for more information.