Brain Tumor Surgery

There are different types of surgery and surgeons use various instruments and methods to remove your brain tumor. A craniotomy is one of the most widely used techniques to treat a brain tumor. The surgical procedure involves removing a part of the bone from the patient’s skull for better access to the intracranial part of the brain. Based on the location and accessibility of the tumor, the surgery either helps in removing it completely or partially. In cases of partial removal, the patient might also need chemotherapy or radiation posts the brain tumor surgery. The part of the brain that is temporarily removed (bone flap) is replaced after the tumor is removed and fastened with screws and plates into its original place. Based on which part of the skull is removed, the surgery is categorized as Frontal, Pterional or Junctional Craniotomy. Sometimes, the surgeon might use a camera with a lighted scope that is inserted through a small incision in the skull, called as an endoscopic craniotomy. If imaging and computer assisted navigation systems are used, the procedure is called stereotactic craniotomy.

Some of the commonly found symptoms that might indicate a brain tumor include:

  • Vision issues like blurred vision, double vision or peripheral vision
  • Sleep or memory problems
  • Constant headaches that get more frequent and severe with time
  • Change in the pattern of headaches
  • Unexplained vomiting or nausea
  • Seizures or fits

Your neurosurgeon will recommend a tumor surgery to treat brain tumor and also to:

  • properly administer the cancer drugs given to the patient
  • Insert a ventricular access device or a medicated plastic capsule to
  • Insert chemotherapy chips in the patient’s brain
  • Diagnose the exact type of brain tumor


Before the surgery your surgeon will first recommend a biopsy to diagnose the type of tumor and then decide the right plan for brain surgery or brain tumor treatment based on the reports. The biopsy is usually a single day procedure that is conducted in the hospital’s day care. Once the treatment plan is ready, your surgeon will give the following instructions:

  • Fast for 8 to 10 hours before the surgical procedure
  • Stop blood thinning medications minimum 10 days before the surgery
  • Wash hair at least one day before the surgery and ensure they are dry so that your head can be shaved properly

The surgery is performed under general anesthesia by a reputed neurosurgeon and his competent team. Since this is an extensive surgery, it can take anywhere between 4 to 8 hours to complete the procedure. The following are the steps involved in the surgical technique:

  • The part of the head to be operated will be shaved and the skin will be thoroughly cleansed
  • An IV line is inserted in the arm and a urinary catheter is inserted to drain the urine during and post the procedure
  • Based on the type of procedure, the surgeon will make an incision from behind the ear to the nape of the neck or in some other location as per the treatment plan. The incisions are relatively smaller in the case of endoscopic surgeries.
  • The surgeon then pulls the scalp back in order to easily access the brain. A drill or a medical saw may be used to cut the skull.
  • Next, the bone flap is removed and the thick covering below the bone is separated from the bone while facilitating the fluid to flow out
  • Once this is done, the tumor is exposed and the surgeon carefully removes it using specialized equipment. In case it is not fully accessible, only partial tumor is removed
  • After the tumor is removed, the bone flaps are reattached using medical plates and screws
  • The incision is then sutured and a bandage is applied

Post a brain tumor surgery, the patient will have to stay in the hospital for one or two weeks. In case only partial tumor is removed, patients might have to undergo chemotherapy or radiation just after the surgery to kill the cancer cells still remaining in the brain. In many cases, there is a slight swelling in the brain post this surgery. The team of doctors will constantly check to ensure the coordination of the brain and body post-op. For instance, pupils are checked by flashing light in the eyes and strength of the arms and legs is also regularly monitored. Once the patient is discharged, the doctor will recommend:

  • Deep breathing exercises so that the lungs expand and contract, minimizing the risk of pneumonia
  • Walking around a little to prevent blood clots in the legs and to speed up the recovery process
  • Regular exercise with the assistance of a physiotherapist
  • Avoiding heavy lifting for a few weeks post the surgery

Normally, it will take at least 2-3 months for patients to recover completely after this surgery.

Brain cancer treatment is a highly complicated procedure and the surgery comes with quite a few risks and complications. Your surgeon will explain the pros and cons of the surgery and help you understand the severity of the associated risks. Some of the known complications include:

  • Repeated seizures after the surgery
  • Brain haemorrhage (bleeding in the brain)
  • Swelling in the brain
  • Pneumonia or infection in the lungs
  • Meningitis
  • Cerebrospinal fluid leakage
  • Formation of blood clots in the brain or other body parts
  • In some rare cases, paralysis or memory loss

India is home to some highly skilled neurosurgeons and best medical facilities for brain surgery. The success rate of glioblastoma treatment and meningioma surgery treatment for brain tumor is high in India, making it a preferred destination for patients from around the world. Some of the best hospitals for the surgery are located in top cities like Mumbai, Delhi and Hyderabad. Stay, food, travel and other expenses are also comparatively low in India, thus assuring patients of an affordable treatment. Approximate Cost – $7000 – $10000 Post Discharge Stay – 10 Days if you have any further questions regarding the surgery or treatment options, please feel free to talk to our doctors on +91-9999332093.