Neurosurgery is generally referred to as brain surgery, though the term encompasses more. Neurosurgery is the contracted form of neurological surgery. This field of medicine is concerned with the surgical treatment of disorders that affect the whole or part of the central and peripheral nervous systems.
Hence, a neurosurgeon is one who is medically trained to focus exclusively on diagnosing, treating, and managing injuries, diseases, or disorders of the brain, spinal cord, spinal column, and peripheral nerves
Neurosurgery is usually performed to correct various abnormalities in the brain. These could have resulted from birth defects, injuries, and diseases among other reasons.
Here are some of the most common reasons for neurosurgery:
Common Reasons for Neurosurgery
Cerebrovascular Accident (CVA)
This neurological condition is commonly known as “stroke.” This is usually caused by a clot or rupture of the blood vessel transporting the blood and oxygen. It is caused by the obstruction of blood vessels carrying oxygen and nutrients toward the brain. This leads to the deprivation of oxygen and nutrients and, eventually, the death of the brain.
Traumatic Head Injury (THI)
This is the disruption of the normal functioning of the brain, usually through fatal accidents. The disruption is usually caused by an external force like a blow to the head, and in severe cases, the skull is broken, and brain tissues are fatally damaged.
Degenerative Disease of the Spine
This is a neurological condition associated with old age. It is the progressive loss of the biological structure and function of the spinal disc. People over the age of forty are susceptible to this neurological disorder.
Central Nervous System Tumor
This is popularly referred to as a brain tumor, which is an unusual lump of tissue in which there is an uncontrollable growth of brain cells. Brain tumors can begin in the brain or originate from other parts of the body and travel to the brain.
Carotid Artery Disease
This condition occurs when fatty deposits called plaques clog the vessel carrying blood to the brain (carotid artery). This condition increases one’s chance of developing a stroke and brain death.
Hydrocephalus is the accumulation of fluid in the brain. It leads to an increase in head size and can cause brain damage. Without prompt medical intervention, a person with hydrocephalus risks dying.
Trigeminal Neuralgia is a severe facial pain. The pain is often likened to a sharp shooting pain or being electrocuted in the lower part of the mouth, teeth, or gums. Pain can often affect one side of the brain, considerably affect the quality of a person’s life, and even lead to mental illness like depression.
A spinal tumor is the abnormal development of cells within the spinal canal or backbone. A spinal tumor can begin within the spinal cord or the protective membrane of the spinal cord.
Epilepsy and Seizures
Epilepsy is a disorder of the brain characterized by repeated seizures constantly. A seizure is caused by an unexpected change in the brain’s electrical system.