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Innovative brain surgery technique could reduce doctor error

These days, it seems as though a new 3D movie is being released every week. Though this technology provides increased entertainment value in movie theaters, it could soon save the lives of North Carolina surgical patients by reducing the risk of surgical error and brain injury.

Recently, a brain surgeon successfully used 3D cameras to remove a tumor situated at the base of a patient's brain. The large tumor required careful, delicate attention to be entirely extricated without complication. Prior to the operation, the tumor was pressing on the man's optic nerve, which was causing him to go blind.

After completing the procedure, the doctor -- who is already acclaimed for pioneering surgical methods -- was hopeful that widespread use of this technology during brain surgery could significantly reduce the probability of doctor errors. Since there is little room for error in brain surgery, this is a welcome innovation.

The process to develop this technology began 19 years ago when an electrical engineer underwent four separate operations to remove tumor from his brain. Understanding that one small error could put his life in danger, he knew existing techniques could be improved. Now, his vision is becoming reality.

All operations carry risk, but it seems as though brain surgery is among the riskiest of procedures. One momentary lack of care could result in a debilitating, irreversible brain injury. Medical providers should take every step necessary to reduce the possibility accidents from occurring during medical procedures, no matter how complicated they might be.

Patients deserve to have confidence in their doctor's ability to perform an operation according to plan. Should this technology pan out, it could benefit patients and prevent them from becoming the victim of medical malpractice.

Source: The Star, "3D camera for brain surgery a big leap forward," Theresa Boyle, Oct. 27, 2012

  • Dealing with the effects of a medical error can be costly, painful and confusing, particularly if they result in a brain injury. To learn more about your rights in the wake of a medical mistake, please see our Raleigh medical malpractice page.

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