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Brain surgery is any surgery involving the structures of the brain. It is also referred to as neurosurgery, though that term encompasses far more procedures than the former. While this is a very delicate area and the hope is always not to have to cut into a person’s brain, there are a number of medical scenarios that make it necessary. There are also one or two questionable reasons for neurosurgery that have largely gone out of practice.
Accumulated fluid around the brain can actually cause quite a bit of damage, thanks to pressure. The fluid that builds up around the brain when a patient has hydrocephalus is cerebrospinal fluid. There are two goals with brain surgery for this ailment. Firstly, the fluid pressure must be relieved. Secondly, a shunt may be inserted to redirect the flow of fluid.
While not all tumors require surgery, many of them are subject to surgery and brain tumors are no exception. They can cause a number of neurological problems and threaten a victim’s life if they are not treated. Therefore, tumors in the brain that require surgery are removed by neurosurgeons. Of course, there is always the possibility of complications, inability to remove the entire tumor and cancer.
Aneurysms are spots along arteries that become full sacs that can burst causing a number of problems. When they occur in the brain, the lack of blood flow can lead to issues like stroke. A bursting aneurysm can also cause stroke, neurological problems or even death. If a patient is lucky enough to have a doctor spot a brain aneurysm, brain surgery may be recommended to prevent catastrophe.
Whether due to brain injury or spontaneous bleeding in the brain tissue, cerebral hemorrhage is a severe and life-threatening condition. Not all bleeding in the brain requires surgery, but it does if the area of blood is large enough. Drainage to relieve pressure is important, as are procedures to stem the bleeding, in some cases.
An infection in the brain may require a surgeon to go in and surgically drain the infection. The procedures are similar to those used for draining excess blood and cerebrospinal fluid. The goal is to get as much of an infection out as possible so it does not kill the patient.
Brain surgery is very delicate and requires many years of training both in the classroom and in surgery. When done properly, it can change the quality of a person’s life, lessening conditions like seizures, removing cancerous tissue, relieving pressure and much more. What is better is that more possibilities for neurosurgery are arising all the time.