Whenever there is a new development in the field of medicine, it is because some physician will have tried to do something in a safer or better way. This is demonstrated better than anywhere else in the field of neurosurgery, with the work of physicians like Dr. Joseph Yazdi improving the lives of thousands. Originally developed around one and a half century ago, it is now one of the most important fields of medicine.
Neurosurgeons today are able to manage a variety of conditions that affect the spinal cord and the brain, even deeply within it, while minimizing potential complications. They know how to handle the human body’s most delicate tissue. This is thanks to the work of various pioneering and insightful surgeons like Dr. Joseph Yazdi, as well as various technological advances. Some of the key examples of this includes:
- Various endovascular techniques, enabling vascular lesions like aneurysms to be treated using a catheter, thereby avoiding, where possible, open surgery to the brain.
- The operating microscope, which has greatly increased how neurosurgeons can visualize the brain.
- Endoscopic surgical techniques, ensuring procedures are now minimally invasive.
Stereotactic Radiation Therapy
Stereotactic Radiation Therapy (SRT) is the latest development in the field of neurosurgery, whereby radiation, in a lethal amount, is delivered to a very specific part of the body, while avoiding any contact with nearby tissues. In so doing, higher dosages of radiation can be used, because other tissue is not affected.
Radiation therapy has been used in the treatment of various forms of cancer for a long time. When used on a relatively large piece of tissue, such as the breast or the lung, there is no real danger of negative consequences to the patient when nearby tissue is also affected by radiation. In the brain, however, that damage can be very serious. Every part of the brain affects something else in the human body, after all.
Thanks to SRT, people who used to be treated with aggressive and invasive surgical techniques now have far better outcomes. There is less chance of other elements of the brain accidentally being effected and, because the surgery is no longer open, complication rates are significantly reduced and recovery rates are increased tremendously. Best of all, the technique has allowed conditions that were once classed untreatable due to their location to be treated.
SRT has been the greatest development in the field of neurosurgery for a long time. Interestingly, it is a type of multidisciplinary advancement, as it also focuses on radiation oncologists. Unfortunately, brain tumors and other brain diseases continue to carry a very poor prognosis. However, preliminary results say that the five year survival rate has increased by 23% thanks to SRT, which is huge.
Furthermore, it has improved the ability of neurosurgeons to complete minimally invasive procedures, which is safer overall. In so doing, they have created benefits for people from all walks of life. Being able to leave the central nervous system covered as much as possible instantly improves the prognosis of any disease or illness.