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Minimally Invasive Endoscopic Surgery

Short article exploring endoscopic surgery.

Endoscopic brain surgery, also known as minimally invasive brain surgery or endoscopic neurosurgery, involves the use of specially-constructed surgical instruments which allow access to the brain and its associated structure via much smaller incisions than would be required in “traditional” or “open” neurosurgery. In Los Angeles,. Dr. Hrayr K. Shahinian and the staff of the Skull Base Institute have been at the forefront of this exciting field. Although endoscopic brain surgery is not well-suited for the treatment of every type of brain pathology, there are many conditions in which it is now either the procedure of choice or an alternative technique to other, riskier, operations. Conditions in which endoscopic brain surgery has consistently proven itself to be valuable include: * Placement and/or repositioning of shunts to drain excess fluid from the brain * Tumors of the pituitary or pineal glands * Cysts, particularly those on the meninges (the tissues that cover the brain) * Tumors involving the cranial nerves * Arterial-venous malformations (AVMs) * Trigeminal Neuralgia * Hemifacial Spasm * Meningiomas Minimally invasive brain surgery uses small, thin, instruments (<3mm wide and ~20cm long) that are inserted through small skin incisions in the scalp, face, or neck, These instruments are then guided into place by the neurosurgeon, who uses a special lens on the tip of the instrument that is connected to a high resolution television to precisely determine the instrument’s location. Then, under real-time direct viewing via the monitor, the surgeon than repairs the condition that is present. Surgery is usually done under light general anesthesia, and almost all minimally-invasive brain surgery patients are discharged within 3 days of their operation. Of the several advantages to using endoscopic brain surgery, probably the most important are that endoscopic neurosurgery involves far less manipulation of normal brain tissue in gaining access to the site of the underlying disease process and that the recovery time is usually dramatically shorter. In turn, this means that patents at both ends of the age spectrum, meaning the very young and the elderly, will generally tolerate endoscopic neurosurgical procedures much better they would have if the same operations had been done using the older “open” techniques. Located on the campus of the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, and affiliated with that institution, Dr. Hrayr Shahinian and the medical staff of the Skull Base Institute are always committed to providing you with a superior standard of care before, during and after your hospital stay.

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