Chetan Shiv Kumar underwent the awake craniotomy, a major breakthrough in the history of brain surgeries.
Awake craniotomy is an operation that involves accessing the brain through a part of the skull that is removed and then refixed when the surgery is over. This is usually done on a patient under local anaesthesia, while all his vital parameters are monitored though multiple monitoring techniques. The patient is awake all throughout the procedure, listening to his surgeon's instructions. Hence, lifting his hands, making facial movements, and even verbally responding to the surgeon's instructions help in the intra-operative assessment of the neurological status of the patient.
In the case of Chetan Shiv Kumar, Dr Satish Rudrappa, his neurosurgeon at the Manipal Hospital said, "The tumour involved some functionally important areas of the brain." So, awake craniotomy was carried out to prevent post-operative deficits.
Chetan had developed a severe headache and his blood pressure had shot up, when alarmed, he went to the hospital for scans and x-rays. When he was told that there was a small tumour on the right side of his brain and of the surgical procedure the doctors wanted to carry out, he was fully cooperative and went through the surgery. If he had opted for the conventional surgery, he would have been left with a speech dysfunction. But with the surgeon talking to him all throughout the surgery, the speech centre of the brain was being constantly monitored, as were the other parameters.
And just one day after the operation, he was ready to leave for home.
Awake craniotomies and other similar minimally invasive procedures are recommended by Dr Sudarshan Ballal, medical director, Manipal Health Enterprises for, besides being cost effective, they contribute to minimal discomfort or morbidity, shorter hospital stay, early return to work and other routine activities.