Cranial Surgery also known as skull and brain surgery, is a surgical specialty that is utilized in the treatment of various neurological diseases. This surgical intervention is carried out to treat health problems related to the brain and nervous system and is often employed as a life-saving technique in critical situations.
What is Cranial Surgery (Skull and Brain Surgery)?
Cranial Surgery is a surgical specialty that encompasses a variety of different surgical procedures used to treat various health problems related to the skull and brain. It is used to treat health issues caused by diverse factors such as brain tumors, aneurysms, bleeding, epilepsy, and other neurological disorders. These surgical interventions are generally determined based on the patient's overall health, the severity of the health problem, and the patient's symptoms.
Cranial Surgery involves a range of surgical techniques and procedures. These procedures include brain tumor removal, repair of brain haemorrhage or trauma, aneurysm repair, epilepsy surgery, and treatment of other neurological diseases. These surgical interventions are typically performed under anesthesia, and their duration may vary depending on the individual, the disease, and the situation. Following the surgical intervention, the patient may need to stay in the hospital for a certain period, and the healing process begins after the surgery.
Because cranial surgery is utilized in the treatment of complex and vital structures such as the brain and nervous system, it is a surgical specialty that requires expertise and experience. Prior to surgical intervention, a comprehensive evaluation should be carried out regarding the patient's condition and needs. These evaluations assist surgeons in determining appropriate treatment plans and in maintaining the patient's health at the highest level while treating their disease.
When is Cranial Surgery Necessary?
Cranial surgery is a method used in the treatment of many neurological diseases. This method is also used in serious conditions such as brain damage, brain tumors, and other neurological problems, as well as brain and nervous system diseases. These surgical interventions are necessary to save the patient's life or prevent serious neurological damage. Below, we have listed some diseases and conditions that may require cranial surgery:
Brain tumors: these are masses caused by uncontrolled cell growth in the brain. These tumors can compress the brain, pinch nerves, and affect functions. Symptoms can include headaches, nausea, vomiting, seizures, and changes in mental state, depending on the location and size of the tumor. Cranial surgery is used to remove brain tumors and prevent them from causing permanent damage or at least keeping the damage to a minimum.
Brain haemorrhage: a bleeding that occurs as a result of one or more of the blood vessels in the brain rupturing. This condition can damage brain tissue and cause paralysis, seizures, brain edema, and even death. Cranial surgery can be used to stop the bleeding.
Aneurysm: these are bulges caused by the weakening of blood vessels. Aneurysms often have no symptoms, but when they burst, they can cause life-threatening bleeding. Cranial surgery can be used to remove or repair an aneurysm.
Epilepsy: a neurological disease caused by abnormal electrical activity in brain cells. This disease can cause seizures and seriously affect quality of life. Cranial surgery is one of several methods used in the treatment of epilepsy.
Hydrocephalus: a condition caused by an imbalance in the fluid balance in the brain. In this condition, fluid accumulates in the brain and puts pressure on brain tissue. Cranial surgery is used in the treatment of hydrocephalus.
What are the Types of Cranial Surgery?
Tumor Surgery: This category involves surgical removal of brain tumors, skull base tumors, pituitary adenomas, and other tumors.
Vascular Surgery: This type of cranial surgery is used for the treatment of vascular diseases. It is used to treat blockages in the brain's arteries or aneurysms.
Functional Surgery: This is a type of cranial surgery used for the treatment of neurological disorders such as Parkinson's disease, epilepsy, obsessive-compulsive disorder, tremors, and others.
Traumatic Surgery: It is used for emergency treatment of brain and head injuries. This type of surgery is performed in emergencies such as brain hemorrhage or brain edema.
Endoscopic Surgery: This type of cranial surgery is performed using small incisions or with the help of cameras and tools. Endoscopic surgery is also known as minimal invasive surgery.
Minimal Invasive Surgery: This type of cranial surgery is performed using smaller incisions. Minimal invasive surgery is a less invasive method compared to open surgery and usually results in fewer complications.
Open Surgery: This is the most traditional cranial surgery method. It requires opening the skull to access the brain.
What are the Risks of Cranial Surgery?
Like other surgical procedures, cranial surgery carries risks. These procedures can cause damage to brain tissue or nerves, infection risk, bleeding, anesthesia complications, and other potential risks. However, with modern surgical techniques and advanced technologies, these risks have been reduced.
Preparation Process for Cranial Surgery
Since cranial surgery is a serious medical procedure, a good preparation process is necessary for both the patient and the surgeon. The preparation process for cranial surgery typically consists of the following steps:
Medical Evaluation: The preparation process for cranial surgery includes evaluating medical factors such as the patient's medical history, current health status, medication use, and allergies. Blood tests, x-rays, and other medical tests may be ordered to evaluate the patient's overall health. This medical evaluation is important to determine if the patient is suitable for the surgical procedure.
Nutrition: Prior to cranial surgery, the patient should not eat anything for at least 8 hours before the surgery to reduce the risk of vomiting during anesthesia. Additionally, in the days leading up to the surgery, the patient should consume light foods and avoid alcohol.
Medications: Before cranial surgery, all medications the patient is taking are reviewed to determine which medications should be stopped or continued before the surgery. Additionally, some medications may be given to the patient before or after the surgery.
Anesthesia: During cranial surgery, the patient requires anesthesia to remain asleep and not feel any pain. An anesthesia specialist evaluates the patient's overall health status and selects an appropriate anesthesia method.
Psychological Preparation: Cranial surgery can be a stressful experience for patients. Therefore, it is important to prepare patients psychologically before the surgical procedure. Patients should be informed about how long the procedure will take, what they will feel during the procedure, and what to expect after the procedure.
The preparation process for cranial surgery is important to optimize the patient's overall health status, ensure a successful procedure, and facilitate the patient's recovery process. Therefore, patients should closely follow this process with their surgeons.
Care and Rehabilitation After Cranial Surgery
Care and rehabilitation after cranial surgery are crucial in ensuring that the patient can return to normal activities as soon as possible following the surgical intervention. During this process, physical therapy and rehabilitation are implemented in conjunction with medications and other treatments recommended by the doctor.
Physical therapy includes exercises and other therapies to increase the patient's body movements and functionality. During the rehabilitation process, therapies are administered to help the patient regain basic skills such as walking, speaking, thinking, and other essential abilities. Additionally, it is important to support the patient's psychological well-being during this process.
Recovery Process After Cranial Surgery
The recovery process after cranial surgery can vary depending on the patient's overall health, type of surgical intervention, and other factors. During the recovery process, the patient may need to stay in the hospital for a certain period.
During the recovery process, the patient may need to take medication and receive other treatments for a certain period. It is also important for the patient to participate in a regular follow-up program after the surgical intervention. This follow-up program allows for the monitoring of the patient's health status and the implementation of necessary treatments.
Support from the patient and their family is crucial during the recovery process after cranial surgery. This support is necessary to meet the patient's physical and emotional needs. The patient may feel stressed and anxious during the recovery process, so psychological support is also essential.
An Overview of Cranial Surgery
Cranial surgery is a treatment method applied in serious health problems. Surgical intervention can be effective in the treatment of brain damage, tumors, bleeding, and other conditions. It can be successfully performed with open communication and preparation between the patient and doctor. The postoperative care and rehabilitation process is very important for the patient to return to normal activities.
To minimize the risks after surgery, it is important for the patient to establish clear communication with their doctor before surgery and to follow the recommended treatment plan after surgery. In the recovery process, it is also important for the patient to participate in a regular follow-up program after surgery. Support from the patient and their family is crucial in the recovery process after cranial and brain surgery to meet their physical and emotional needs.