'Massively Tailored Surgery': Man Plays His Saxophone Through 9-hour Complex Surgery

In what comes as a strange incident, a musician had a brain tumor removed in Italy this week in a nine-hour surgery while playing his saxophone. The 35-year-old male patient had the procedure done at Rome’s Paideia International Hospital. In a press release, the hospital said that that the doctors could ensure that they are not compromising his neurological functions. Dr Christian Brogna surgery leader and neurosurgeon said, “Each brain is unique, as is each person.” “Awake surgery makes it possible to map with extreme precision during surgery the neuronal networks that underlie the various brain functions such as playing, speaking, moving, remembering, and counting,” she added.

The tumor was located in a very complex area of the brain. Also, the patient is left-handed which makes things more complicated because the neural pathways of the brain are much more complicated. The doctor revealed that the patient played the theme song from the 1970 movie “Love Story,” and the Italian national anthem. This happened various times throughout the surgery.

The patient had told the doctors that preserving his musical ability was very important to him. Therefore, playing the sax during surgery allowed Brogna to map different functions of the brain. According to a report by CBS, Dr Brogna led a highly specialised 10-member international team for the procedure.

In the press release, the doctor said, “The goal of awake surgery is to remove the brain tumour or a vascular malformation such as cavernomas located in specific areas of the brain while preserving the patient’s quality of life.”

In a span of about 10 days before the operation, the patient met with the medical team. This happened around six or seven times. As per the doctor, it was important to the surgeons to respect the patient’s wishes. This led to what is now being deemed as “a massively tailored surgery.”

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However, after the surgery, the doctor revealed that the he was proud that his patient had been able to go back to his normal life. He is also proud of the fact that with each operation, knowledge of this branch of medicine is advancing.

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