Doctors Devise Brain Tumor Removal That Saves Face—Specifically, Yours

Removing tumors at the base of the skull have traditionally required going in through the facial area—sometimes with disfiguring results. However, a doctor at John Hopkins University has figured out how to reach the back of your head using the skulls natural openings.

"I looked at the 'window' that already exists in the skull, above the jawbone and below the cheekbone and realized this was an access route not previously recognized for this kind of surgery," said Kofi Boahene in a press release. This route not only saves the patient from potential facial paralysis from snipped nerves, the surgery itself is much less complex and can be finished three times faster—requiring just two hours of time on the table instead of six. The rate of post-surgery complications also dip significantly when using this method—patients can reportedly be discharged the next day with no externally visible scarring.

Boahene hopes to next employ a surgical robot a la the da Vinci Surgical System to further minimize the procedure's invasiveness. [Medical Express - Top art courtesy of Bernhard Lelle / Shutterstock]


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