Greater precision, less risk for brain surgery

close up of a male and female doctor, both wearing blue gowns, caps and surgical masks, as they perform surgery

Every year in the UK, 16,000 people are diagnosed with a brain tumour, and 71% of deaths from brain tumours occur in people under 75 years old. In fact, brain tumours claim more lives of people under 40 than any other cancer, including in children. In addition, brain tumours are extremely difficult to diagnose, and their incidence is rising, with as many as 40% of cancers eventually spread to the brain.[i]

Brain tumour surgery is a highly complex, delicate and risky procedure. Yet a new procedure carried out by a team of surgeons in London may prove to be a game-changer for both patients and doctors alike.

Using both a laser probe and a so-called “smart knife”, surgeons successfully removed a brain tumour from twenty-two year old Ruben Hill, the first patient on which the new procedure was used. The trial operation’s success was recently published in Medical News Today[ii], which notes that the new procedure was able to get around two major challenges facing surgeons performing brain tumour surgery. A laser that can see and a knife that can think One major problem that surgeons encounter while performing brain tumour surgery is the difficulty in distinguishing tumour and healthy brain tissue. Current procedures can only do this by Read more

A vision of the future

a graphic design showing a yellow light bulb with an eye inside it, on a light turquoise background

When technology and medicine meet, the results can bring countless benefits for millions of people around the world, from patients to doctors, from companies to insurers. Today’s post features two devices, which will soon be making their market debut.

A closer look at our health Those smart new glasses your colleague is wearing might actually be smarter than you think. VSP Global, a US based non-profit eye care company has come up with a new health wearable that is visionary in every sense of the word. With frames crafted by designer eyewear maker Dragon Alliance, the new health-tracking glasses contain sensors with similar functions to a wrist-worn fitness tracker, such as monitoring steps taken, calories burned and distance travelled. The glasses can be synced via Bluetooth to an app for real time activity tracking. Although the glasses will first be tested on Read more

All the right moves for Parkinson’s sufferers

Tomorrow marks the 2nd annual World Brain Day, sponsored by the World Federation of Neurology. On this occasion, Best Doctors looks at how people all over the world have harnessed the power of dance as an effective treatment for Parkinson’s, a debilitating neurological condition.

Parkinson’s disease is a progressive, neurodegenerative disorder resulting from the loss of brain cells responsible for producing dopamine, a chemical that controls body movement and muscle coordination. Symptoms vary, but may include tremors, shaking and difficulty moving or walking. Sufferers can also experience cognitive symptoms, such as anxiety, and limitations with problem solving, thinking and memory. 4 in 1000, or approximately 80,000 people in Australia suffer from Parkinson’s disease. In people over 60 years old, Parkinson’s incidence increases to 1 in 100. There is still no cure, yet treatments and therapies are available which can control symptoms and help improve Read more