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Gamma Knife Surgery for Malignant Glioma

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:

Gamma knife surgery for malignant glioma uses radiation to remove a tumor in your brain.

HOW TO PREPARE:

The week before your surgery:

  • Arrange to have someone drive you home after surgery.
  • Tell your surgeon about all medicines you currently take. He or she will tell you if you need to stop any medicine for surgery, and when to stop. He or she will tell you which medicines to take or not take on the day of surgery.
  • You may need blood tests before surgery. You may also need a CT scan, MRI, chest x-ray, or ECG.

The night before your surgery:

You may be told not to eat or drink anything after midnight.

The day of your surgery:

  • You or a close family member will be asked to sign a legal document called a consent form. It gives healthcare providers permission to do the procedure or surgery. It also explains the problems that may happen, and your choices. Make sure all your questions are answered before you sign this form.
  • Take only the medicines your surgeon told you to take.
  • Healthcare providers may insert an intravenous tube (IV) into your vein. A vein in the arm is usually chosen. Through the IV tube, you may be given liquids and medicine.
  • An anesthesiologist will talk to you before your surgery. You may need medicine to keep you asleep or numb an area of your body during surgery. Tell healthcare providers if you or anyone in your family has had a problem with anesthesia in the past.

WHAT WILL HAPPEN:

What will happen:

  • Your healthcare provider will inject local anesthesia in the areas of your head where the head frame will be placed. The head frame will be attached to a helmet placed over your head.
  • When your surgery starts, the bed you are lying on will be moved inside the treatment hood. Your healthcare provider will use the computer to aim beams of radiation into the holes of the helmet. These beams will pass through your skull and brain until they reach your tumor. A computer will show pictures of your brain to your healthcare provider.

After your surgery:

You will be taken to a room to rest until you are fully awake. You will be monitored closely for any problems. Do not get out of bed until your healthcare provider says it is okay. You will then be able to go home or be taken to your hospital room.

CONTACT YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IF:

  • You have a fever.
  • You get a cold or the flu.
  • You have questions or concerns about your surgery.

Seek Care Immediately if

  • You have a sudden, severe headache.
  • You have trouble seeing, breathing, speaking, or thinking clearly.
  • You passed out or had a seizure.
  • Your face is getting numb or you cannot move your arms or legs.

Risks

You may need open brain surgery if problems occur during gamma knife surgery. Your brain, eyes, bones, blood vessels, or nerves may get damaged during surgery. Radiation may cause nausea, vomiting, skin or blood problems, or seizures. Surgery may not completely remove the tumor, or the tumor may come back. You may get a blood clot in your leg or arm. This may become life-threatening.

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your healthcare providers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment.

© Copyright IBM Corporation 2021 Information is for End User's use only and may not be sold, redistributed or otherwise used for commercial purposes. All illustrations and images included in CareNotes® are the copyrighted property of A.D.A.M., Inc. or IBM Watson Health

The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

Learn more about Gamma Knife Surgery for Malignant Glioma (Precare)

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Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.