Journey To Mass General
After receiving the diagnosis in Bermuda, Jane considered many hospitals in the United States. However, given that Mass General was so highly regarded by a relative who had also undergone treatment at Mass General, she contacted the hospitals International Office directly.
Jane called the International Patient Center at Mass General, and connected with Anel Mejia, a client liaison who expedited her evaluation within the neurosurgerys department. If I had not had the privilege of speaking with Anel in the International Office, I would not have had this extremely positive experience at Mass General, said Jane. Anel loves what she does, and her first priority is to help patients. As Jane was an international patient, the team at the IPC also organized transportation and accommodation for Jane during her four-month stay.
What To Do During Brain Surgery Recovery
The time it takes to heal from a brain surgery depends on several factors, including the type of procedure done, the area of the brain that was worked on, the patient’s overall health and the patient’s age. During the recovery period, the patient may experience some of the following things and may need some help in order to recover.
Right After Brain Surgery
After surgery, most patients spend time in the intensive care unit for careful monitoring of their vital signs and brain function by the hospitalist, the neurosurgeon and the ICU staff. They will try to determine if there are any mental deficits or surgical complications. If no complications occur, the patient gets to be moved to a hospital room on the regular floor after about a day. Many patients see physical therapy, occupational therapy, and sometimes speech therapy as part of their brain surgery recovery. The assessment by these professionals determines whether or not the patient needs extra help to recover function before they get discharged from the hospital.
After Going Home
When you get home, you need to take care of things like surgical scar itching, head pain, and numbness near the incision site. You might be able to hear a clicking noise, which indicates that the bones are knitting together after the surgery. This process will eventually lead to complete healing of the skull after about 6-12 months.
Drive Before You’re Ready
If your doctor tells you not to get behind the wheel — whether it’s for 2 weeks or 2 months — it’s for a good reason. Your reaction time may be slower and you could get into an accident. Until you’re ready to handle it, get lifts from a friend or family member. Or ask them to do your errands for you.
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How Do I Manage Pain During My Recovery
Physician anesthesiologists are also pain management specialists for conditions related to surgery. Before the operation, the physician anesthesiologist may ask about your pain tolerance to help gauge how best to manage any post-operative pain, guiding decisions such as the proper narcotics dosage and the feasibility of nonnarcotic pain relief medication. The physician anesthesiologist will consult with you after surgery and may adjust your treatment based on the level of pain you are experiencing.
The physician anesthesiologist will also consider factors such as a pain medicationâs potential impact on oxygenation and breathing during your initial recovery or on your ability to interact promptly during the post-operative assessment of your neurological status. This weighing of benefits and risks is especially important for pain relief medication taken during the first 24 hours after any major neurosurgical procedure.
Physician anesthesiologists are the most highly skilled medical experts in anesthesia care, pain management, and critical care medicine. They have the education and training that, in some circumstances, can mean the difference between life and death.
The Long Road To Accessible Rehabilitation
Rehabilitation, as a defined benefit in health insurance contracts, had its origins in orthopedic and musculoskeletal diagnoses. When medical science advanced to the point that doctors could save patients with acquired brain injuries in larger numbers, new rehabilitation tactics had to be developed.
Insurance contracts and the manner in which they are applied, however, limit treatment only to hospital, skilled-nursing, or outpatient settings and limit the amount of treatment available in each of these settings. In the last category, the benefit frequently allows only a constrained time frame, typically 20 to 24 visits per year, which, while generally sufficient for most musculoskeletal and orthopedic conditions, is hardly sufficient for neurological rehabilitation. Oddly, insurance contracts do not impose similar time constraints on care for any other injured or diseased organ system. Cancer, for example, is not treated for 60 days with no further benefits available, as often occurs with brain injury. Treatment rendered to well-known individuals, such as Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords or ABC News reporter Bob Woodruff, provides testament to what is possible and what should be done. Their treatment was specialized, intensive, of sufficient duration, and not arbitrarily financially constrained.
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What Are The Common Emotional And Social Impacts Of Epilepsy Surgery
It is important to consider common emotional and social aspects a person and their family or caregiver may have before, during, and after surgery. People may react to surgery and hospitalization uniquely, with a range of emotions.
Common themes for people living with epilepsy and family members during the journey through epilepsy surgery include
Advanced Technology Guides Us Throughout Your Brain Surgery
Here at Neurosurgery & Spine Consultants, were here to help you navigate through this difficult time. If youre thinking about having brain surgery, youll want to reach out to us to learn more about the level of care we provide to each and every patient we see. Our advanced technology we incorporate into every brain surgery is some of the best youll experience and were always looking for ways to further improve our already excellent patient satisfaction rating.
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Independance Motivation And Hope
My son Sharat suffered a severe traumatic brain injury 23 years ago leaving him with Aphasia and right sided weakness from his vision,hearing to his limbs. The lockdown in June was a great challenge for him as his caregivers stopped coming, no gym workouts and no outings for a coffee.
Being his mother and primary carer I feared that this was a hotbed for depression. I scoured the net and chanced upon FlintRehab. As there was a trial period it was safe for us to risk getting it across to Auckland.
His OT checked it out and felt that it was ideal. I can honestly second this.
He enjoys working on it and now after three months can do it on his own. His left hand helps his right hand. The FitMi video explains and shows him what to do, it gives him marks and applauds him too!!
He has to use both sides of his brain. The caregivers are OT students who returned enjoy working on it with him.
In three months there motivation built up in him with a drive to use his right hand. There is definitely a slight improvement in his right hand.
This encourages him as well as the caregivers to try harder.His overall mood is upbeat. He enjoys it, so much so, that it doesnt matter if his caregiver is away.
FitMi is a blessing.
How To Prepare For Brain Surgery
Undergoing any form of surgery can feel overwhelming, but it can be even more frightening when it involves the brain. Thats why Joseph Watson, MD, founded Cerebrum MD in Tysons Corner, Vienna, Virginia. At his practice, you can expect truly personalized care while you navigate your treatment options.
Dr. Watson offers these insights into what you can expect when having brain surgery and how you can prepare for your procedure and recovery.
What Are The Treatment Options For Someone With An Inoperable Brain Tumor
Brain tumors could be considered inoperable because:
- They dont have clear borders and are hard to distinguish from healthy tissues.
- They are too close to areas of the brain that control vision, language, body movements or other important margins.
- Surgery would result in a significant loss of function.
Some tumors are labeled inoperable, but can be removed by neurosurgeons with specialized expertise. If youve been told your tumor is inoperable, consider seeking a second opinion at a large, multidisciplinary brain tumor center. These teams typically offer advanced surgical techniques that allow greater access to hard-to-reach sections of the brain.
Despite advancements in treatment, the biology, location or behavior of a tumor may make it truly inoperable. Other treatments such as radiation, chemotherapy, immunotherapy or clinical trials may be the best choice.
Prepare For Ambiguous Loss
This one isnt technically speaking a direct effect of frontal lobe brain damage, but it is something many experience after a brain injury.
Ambiguous loss refers to a loss that occurs without closure or any of the typical markers that accompany grief.
The term was coined by psychologist Pauline Boss who described it as a physical presence but psychological absence such as in cases of dementia or Alzheimers disease.
It also frequently accompanies traumatic brain injury, especially frontal lobe damage.
Because frontal lobe damage often results in personality changes, the people closest to the injured person may feel like they have lost their loved one, when in fact they have just changed.
This can lead to a complex blend of grief and guilt grief for the loss of the person they once knew, and guilt for feeling that way when that person is still alive.
Ambiguous loss can also affect the person with the injury, especially when they have accepted or adapted to their new way of life.
Unresolved ambiguous grief leads to emotional problems and makes it difficult to move forward with recovery.
Resolving the feelings associated with ambiguous loss is an important step that allows both you and your loved ones to finally move forward.
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Planning For Brain Surgery
The first step when planning for brain surgery is to understand the recovery process.
There are several types of brain surgeries, ranging from minimally invasive techniques that use few if any small incisions, to those with large incisions through the scalp and skull. While brain surgery techniques can differ, they all have two things in common: It takes time to recover, and youll need extra rest.
Dr. Watson can provide more personalized recovery estimates based on your age, overall health, and the following:
- Type of brain surgery you need
- Location of the tumor, aneurysm, or abnormal tissue
- Brain areas impacted by your surgery
At a minimum, you can expect to stay in the hospital after having brain surgery for at least 2-5 days. During this time, doctors and nurses will provide comprehensive care 24 hours a day to monitor your response to the surgery.
What Are The Risks
No surgery is without risks. General complications of any surgery include bleeding, infection, blood clots, and reactions to anesthesia. Specific complications related to a craniotomy may include stroke, seizures, swelling of the brain, nerve damage, cerebrospinal fluid leak, and loss of some mental functions.
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Alternative Approaches To Helping Recovery
People often ask about alternative treatments to help in their recovery.
We understand that you may want to look at these options, but its important to keep in mind that theyre not fully supported by medical evidence and they may interfere with your standard treatment.
You should always speak to your healthcare team before pursuing alternative treatments.
A ketogenic diet is one that encourages eating very low amounts of carbohydrates and increased amounts of fats. Although there is currently no scientific evidence to show that a ketogenic diet is effective in treating brain tumours, it is being trialed by some specialist centres.
The use of cannabis oil is highly publicised and there is some evidence that it can help treat some side-effects caused by brain tumours – for example, pain and chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting,
However, theres no supporting evidence for the treatment of the tumour itself. Its important to remember that cannabis-based products have not been licensed for people with brain tumours.
After Epilepsy Surgery: Emotional & Social Changes
Beyond physical recovery, there are also emotional and social changes after epilepsy surgery. These changes impact you as well as your family, caregivers, friends, co-workers, and others in your life. Preparing for and addressing these emotional and social changes is important. Your doctor and epilepsy care team can help you find resources as you adjust to your new life.
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Can Cysts Turn Into Cancer
Cysts can be tiny or very large, and most cysts are benign . There are hundreds of different types of cysts that form for many different reasons, such as infections or blockages in ducts. Tumors, also known as neoplasms, are generally solid masses of tissue that form from abnormal new growth of cells.
Endoscopic Brain Tumor Surgery
Neuroendoscopy is a minimally invasive surgical procedure in which the neurosurgeon removes the tumor through small holes in the skull or through the mouth or nose. A surgery done through the nose is called an endonasal endoscopic surgery. This approach allows the surgeon to access areas of the brain that cannot be reached with traditional surgery, as well as remove the tumor without cutting or harming other parts of the skull.
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Recovery And Life After Surgery
- Most people are back to school or work in 4 to 6 weeks. Changes in thinking, social activities and emotions may take longer, depending on what types of problems were present before surgery.
- Anti-seizure medications will typically remain the same for several months after surgery.
- It is important to consider the emotions a person and their family members may have before, during, and after surgery.
- After surgery, many people can achieve new milestones. They may be able to drive, find or keep a job, do better at school, develop new friends or try new activities.
The Importance Of Environment To Repair
Environment plays a crucial role in promoting neurological recovery of function. As the brain adjusts, its use of newly acquired function drives plastic change, while disuse of other areas diminishes changes. If the patient is encouraged to use an unimpaired arm rather than an impaired arm, the number of neurons assigned to the unimpaired extremity actually increases in response to use. This is counterproductive, as those same cells might be better recruited by demand for use of the impaired arm. It is important to promote the best motor patterns while facilitating use of the impaired arm so as not to learn abnormal motor patterns. Not only does the nature of the treatment stimulus matter, but the degree to which the environment demands and allows use of the function is important as well.
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Mass General Department Of Radiation Oncology
The Department of Radiation Oncology at Massachusetts General Hospital combines clinical expertise, compassionate care and advanced radiation therapies to deliver the safest, most effective treatments for cancer and benign tumors. Their state-of-the-art radiation technologies, found in few other U.S. hospitals, provide precise targeting of tumors while minimizing the potential for injury to surrounding tissue. Each year, they successfully treat thousands of patients with noninvasive and minimally invasive internal and external radiation therapies, including proton beam therapy, and others. For more information, please visit:
Sudden Changes In Behavior And/or Personality
Because the frontal lobe helps govern your emotions and impulses, damage to the frontal lobe can make it harder for a person to control their anger and aggression.
Depending on the severity, an injury can either exaggerate a persons natural temperament, or it can completely alter their personality.
For example, a normally agreeable and happy person may become easily angered and irritable after their injury.
These personality changes are perhaps the toughest challenges to overcome during frontal lobe brain injury recovery.
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Family And Medical Leave Act :
The FMLA provides unpaid, job-protection leave for people with a serious health condition or who need to care for a spouse, parent, or child with a serious health condition. FMLA leave can be taken for a total of 12 weeks in any 12-month period. Covered servicemembers and their caregivers may be eligible for up to 26 weeks of FMLA leave in a 12-month period. During this time, you will also keep your insurance policy if it is through your employer, though you will likely still have to make your regular contributions.
Not all employers are covered employers for FMLA generally, private employers with less than 50 employees are not covered by FMLA, but that may vary by state. Government agencies and elementary and secondary schools are covered by FMLA. To qualify for FMLA leave, a person must work in a location where their employer has at least 50 employees within 75 miles.
To qualify for FMLA with a covered employer, generally, a person must have worked for at least 12 months within the last seven years. Also, the person must have worked for the employer for at least 1250 hours within the last 12 months. Qualifications differ for airline flight attendants and flight crew.
Page 3 of the Department of Labors The Employees Guide to the Family and Medical Leave Act has a useful graphic to help determine if you are eligible for FMLA leave.
Your employer may be permitted to make you use your saved-up paid-time-off for your FMLA leave.
Can Frontal Lobe Damage Repair Itself
But as devastating as these effects are, they are not necessarily permanent, because every region of the brain works together in ways we still dont fully understand.
Its possible for the brain to rewire itself to compensate for an injury to the frontal lobe and allow undamaged areas to take over a function!
Therefore, even if youve suffered damage to the frontal lobe, this doesnt automatically mean you have permanently lost an ability controlled by that area.
Now that weve explained that, were ready to explore what exactly the frontal lobe is chiefly responsible for.
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