A hospital in India has released stunning video that shows a patient playing guitar while undergoing brain surgery.
Abhishek Prasad, a musician who had been diagnosed with dystonia, was fully awake when he underwent the seven-hour surgery at a private hospital in the southern city of Bengaluru earlier this month.
Doctors asked Prasad to bring his guitar into the operation theatre and have him play in order to get immediate feedback on whether the procedure was having any effect on the cramping in his hands caused by the dystonia.
“When he is making the burns inside my brain, that should show some difference in the fingers, so that was a part of the procedure,” Prasad said.
The IT worker-turned-musician began experiencing the painful spasms, cramping and contractions in the middle, ring and little finger on his left hand almost two years ago, but it took a year to have the disorder correctly diagnosed.
“I thought the stiffness was because of over-practice. I took a break and tried again and realized that there was no respite from the stiffness,” Prasad told the BBC. “Some doctors told me it was muscle fatigue and I was given painkillers, multivitamins, antibiotics, physiotherapy.”
Neurosurgeon Sharan Srinivasan said standard tests used to identify irregular brain conditions don’t reveal dystonia.
“It is a very peculiar problem because the MRI is normal, CT scan is normal, all blood tests are normal,” Srinivasan said. “It’s purely a clinical diagnosis.”
Doctors cut a 1.4-centimetre hole in Prasad’s head and implanted special electrodes nine centimetres inside his brain to correct the problem with his hands.
He says he can remember every detail of the operation and added that he didn’t feel any pain during the surgery due to local anesthesia.
Prasad was alert, talking and playing his guitar during a press conference on Thursday, a week after going under the knife.
Prasad has a scar on the top of his head and will need a couple of months to regain the full use of his left hand.
Prasad, who quit his IT job in 2012 to pursue his dream of becoming a musician, said he hopes to release his first album next year.
— With files from Reuters.