Neurosurgery webcast

The film below shows surgeons from the Neuroscience Institute at Le Bonheur Children's Medical Center perform a hemispherectomy on a 6-year-old girl with epilepsy. This involves removing a large part of the girl's left hemisphere; the corpus callosum, the bundle of approximately 100 million nerve fibres connecting the two hemispheres, is then severed.

One of the surgeons in the film describes epilepsy as "an electrical storm" in the brain. The procedure is performed to remove the eye of this "storm". The corpus callosum is then severed, just in case the tissue which is the source of the abnormal electrical activity has not been removed in its entirety. This would prevent any remaining abnormal activity spreading from its source, in the left hemisphere, to the right hemisphere.

The film is not for the squeamish

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Great video on that procedure. Thanks for posting this.

By joltvolta (not verified) on 07 Sep 2007 #permalink

I thought I would be able to watch it, but it became a bit too emotional for me. My daughter had her right frontal lobe removed because of partial complex seizures. I am so happy that surgeons are able to do this, but I don't have the stomache to watch it.

Very good stuff. 50 years ago she would have been institutionalized, but thanks to big pharma (lamictal,) jMRIs and a skilled surgeon she is now a pain in the ass teenager. :)