Awake Brain Surgery:  What to Expect

Awake Brain Surgery: What to Expect


[ Music ]>>Thank you for choosing the University
of Michigan for your awake brain surgery. Over the next few minutes, we’ll
be giving you a brief overview of what to expect for your procedure. We understand the idea of undergoing awake brain
surgery may seem frightening and it is our goal, by providing as much advance information as
possible, to reassure you before your surgery and smooth the course of your
procedure and hospitalization. At the University of Michigan we have a long
history of providing advanced, compassionate, multidisciplinary care in an environment
that puts patients and families first. Our team performs many procedures
similar to yours each year and our surgeons are internationally
recognized as expertise. And we want to share with you the system that
works well for our patients and our team. Nothing is more important than your care and, at
the University of Michigan, you can rest assured that your team of talented and
world renowned experts have you and your loved ones’ best interest in mind. You will have the opportunity to meet with
your surgeon, anesthesiologist, neurologist, speech language pathologist, and operating
room nurse well ahead of your date of surgery and they will be able to answer any additional
questions that this video does not answer.>>When I ended up getting my
surgery, about two months before, I starting getting headaches
on the right side of my brain.>>About a week before I came into the hospital, there would be pretty severe
headaches in the morning. My wife and I were at a casino one
night and I was just very disoriented. I didn’t feel well. I couldn’t find my wife. I was walking through a food court and there
were chairs everywhere and I was getting mad because people were leaving their chairs out and didn’t realize it was
me walking into the chairs.>>And so finally I had a scan and my doctor
said, “Well, it’s time for you to go to U of M.” I was to a point where I
couldn’t express a lot verbally. So before my surgery — and
I was in the pre-op — I really was feeling, “Let’s
just get this over with.”>>I don’t remember having a lot
of expectations prior to surgery. I just remember being in
a lot of pain and wanting to have this done so I could
get rid of the pain. [ Music ]>>Prior to your surgery date and arrival at
the hospital, be sure to follow the directions that you’ve been given by your doctors
and nurses at the University of Michigan. After your arrival to the hospital,
please check in at surgical reception. After a brief orientation, you’ll be
asked to take a seat in the waiting area. Once your name is called, you’ll be
escorted to pre-operative holding. Your companion will be allowed
to accompany you to pre-op, but may be asked to leave
the area briefly while some of the pre-operative procedures are performed. [ Music ]>>Pre-operatively, I do not remember very much. I do remember the team discussing kind
of what the process was going to be.>>And that, for me, was very comforting. I know that there’s a lot of people in
that room and certainly I would never know who they all were, but to know some key
factors and some key people makes a difference.>>But I don’t remember having any surprises
thrown at me, anything of that nature. I feel like I was given all the
information I needed before the surgery.>>Once you reach the pre-op bay a nurse
will close the curtains and you’ll be asked to wear your surgical gown and socks. At this time, you’ll also be
asked to get onto the stretcher. A series of safety check
questions will be asked in pre-op and will be repeated during the
various stages of your care. The pre-op team will take
your vital signs, start an IV, and do other things in preparation
for your surgery. Once you have settled into pre-op, several members of your surgical team
will visit you and introduce themselves. You will have the opportunity to discuss,
in detail, what to expect on the day of your surgery and have all
of your questions answered. Once you have been through the pre-op process,
your companion will be allowed to stay with you right up until you
are transported to surgery. Just prior to transport, the anesthesiologist
will give you some medicine to help you relax. You’ll be transported from pre-op back to
surgery by two members of your anesthesia team. [ Music ]>>At first I was rather
surprised I was going to be awake. However, I was grateful to be awake. Certainly they put you out and then through
the surgery they allow you to wake up. And then, with that moment of awakeness, I
was able to work with my speech pathologist and she was able to help guide the surgeon.>>I don’t remember the initial surgery
where they actually get into the tumor site and do the surgical cutting and things like
— I don’t remember any of those things. But I remember lying on a table and I remember
the doctor asking me questions related to my function. So he was asking can you move
— you know — move your foot. Can you feel this on your finger? Can you — just move different body parts to
make sure he was not affecting healthy parts of my brain tissue he didn’t want to affect.>>The bed itself, while I was
having surgery, was very comfortable. I know that you can’t see everyone
so, to me, that’s a little awkward. But, on the other hand, I’m not
so sure I wanted to see everyone.>>While I know I must have been aware of my
surroundings because I was having decisions and answering the neural surgeon’s questions, I don’t remember having any
pain or discomfort whatsoever.>>When you arrive in your operating
room, your team will be waiting for you. [ Music ] You’ll be transferred from
the stretcher to the OR table. Then, monitors for your vital signs and padding
will be applied to keep you comfortable. Once the team is assured that you are
comfortable, the procedure will begin. You will be deeply sedated for most of
the uncomfortable parts of the procedure, but there will be times when
you will be awake and be able to cooperate with neurologic testing. [ Music ] Remember, we do many of these
specific procedures and the quality of your care is important to us. The entire care team will be
with you during the whole process and will attend to your needs as they arise. While you’re in surgery, your
companions will be updated regularly. [ Music ] Once your surgery has finished, you
will be wheeled into the recovery area. You’ll receive constant care by your team
and your recovery nurse will be with you. As you begin to regain consciousness, your
health care team will do what they can to insure that you’re comfortable. Everyone reacts to surgery differently. Some patients experience very little
pain while others have significant more. We will do our best to address your specific
needs and manage your symptoms of pain and nausea during the post-operative period. Your journey will continue from here as
you’re admitted and allowed time to recover. You’ll receive plenty of care and
instructions to help during the entire process.>>Following my surgery, I was,
of course, taken to my room. And I recall, I think, maybe
sleeping the first day or so. I don’t really remember a lot there.>>I think the first thing I remember
clearly is sitting up in a chair in my room having a bad headache and being
concerned about if I sneeze or if I vomit from the anesthesia how am I going to be able
to do that with my head hurting like this.>>I did feel a little bit
sick follow the surgery, but more from, I think maybe the medicine.>>The pain I had after surgery
was nothing at all compared to the pain I had before the surgery. I had a good regiment of medications to help
with, I believe, post-operative swelling, headaches, potential for seizers.>>Staff treated me very kindly. As far as nurses coming in, taking my blood
pressure, or, I know a couple of them had to maybe do something with my port, but, you
know, all in all I was treated very kindly.>>I don’t think the team could
have done anything better prior to, during, or after the surgery. Obviously I have nothing to compare this
to because I’ve only gone through it once, thank God, with one team, thank God [laughing].>>I had great support from
my husband and family members and things like that when I got home. So, as far as the total experience with
all of those people, made me feel good.>>I wound up at the right place with
the right people at the right time and I think everything went
as well as can be expected. And I’m here years later. I think that’s pretty good proof. [ Music ]>>For patients that would have to go through
the brain surgery that I just went through, all I could do is encourage
them to have a positive outlook. Though it seems like a very terrible
scenario, what do you have to lose?>>The surgery itself was not so scary. It was not so bad. The surgery I don’t remember as
being a bad part of my experience.>>I mean, I wouldn’t be able to talk right now. I might not even be here right
now had I not had that surgery.>>Stay strong and move on and take
the best care of yourself as you can and you get the best team and the best
doctors and the best help you can.>>So, overall, just, you know, once you
learn about it, do a little homework, learn who your doctor is, ask
questions, I write them down on paper. And then, like I say, then you just go for it.>>If you have any questions about your arrival,
surgery, or recovery, please speak with any of the experts on your health care team. Thanks again for choosing the
University of Michigan health system. [ Music ]


20 thoughts on “Awake Brain Surgery: What to Expect

  1. i had a awake spine surgery. i was terrified but overall the staff was awesome and kept me pretty cool throughout the deal.

  2. this makes me sob just thinking about it. i have no pain tolerance. how could this not hurt?!?!?! i wouldn't want to answer questions or look at pictures, i would want to by unconscious and unaware. because atleast then if you were dying you wouldnt know and you wouldnt remember suffering.

  3. Lemme guess… I will be a doctor soon… cuz I love watching SURGERIES AND DEAD PEOPLES

  4. God bless (best wishes, if you’re not religious) to ANYONE who has to go through this. It must be terrifying.

  5. dude all the people saying omg that would hurt… do you really think they would do a surgery on you AWAKE if it hurt??? the brain does not have pain receptors in it. meaning you don’t feel anything that happens in your brain. jeez

  6. I'm watching this because I have siezures and in a view weeks I'm getting an MRI to see how big the black dots are on my brain that causes them are and If there big enough I might be having surgery to get them taken away so I can stop having siezures

  7. How amazing to have the healthcare team come and introduce themselves! In the UK with the NHS that hardly ever happened (as rare as hens' teeth almost – unless you were well-known/wealthy) and you get groups of medics standing around you talking about you but not to you, I really hope this has changed! But I'm really surprised to see that even the USA has big wards with just curtains around = no privacy!

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