Craniotomy in India

A craniotomy is a major brain surgery in which a bone flap from the skull is temporarily removed to have an access to the brain. This procedure is mainly performed in patients who suffer from traumatic brain injuries or brain lesions. It is a highly critical procedure and a patient may take months to recover from it. This surgery is also conducted prior to the placement of deep brain stimulators, which is often recommended to patients suffering from epilepsy and Parkinson’s disease. This procedure has a wide range of other applications as well such as brain imaging and electrical stimulation.

Craniotomy in India

A craniotomy is a highly sensitive procedure that is performed in some of the top neurosurgery hospitals in India. Because of the sensitivity of the procedure and the risks involved, this surgery should only be conducted by highly experienced and skilled surgeons. The top neurosurgeons in India are educated from some of the most prestigious medical universities in the world. They hold several years of experience in conducting all types of brain surgeries and have so far treated thousands of patients from around the world.

Treatment and Cost

15

Total Days
In Country

2 No. Travelers

5 Day in Hospital

10 Days Outside Hospital

Treatment cost starts from

USD 4600

Hospitals

About the Craniotomy

Craniotomy surgery is one of the most common types of brain surgery conducted to treat a brain tumor. It mainly aims at removing a lesion, tumor, or a blood clot in the brain by opening a flap above the brain to access the targeted area. This flap is removed on a temporary basis and again put in place when the surgery is done. Around 90 percent of the cases of brain tumors are diagnosed in adults aged between 55 and 65. Among children, a brain tumor is diagnosed within an age range of 3 to 12 years.

Craniotomy procedures are conducted with the help of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans to reach the location precisely in the brain that requires treatment. A three-dimensional image for the same is achieved of the brain in conjunction with localizing frames and computers to view a tumor properly. A clear distinction is made between abnormal or tumor tissue and normal healthy tissue and to access the exact location of the abnormal tissue.

Who requires a craniotomy?

In a minimally invasive craniotomy procedure, a burr hole or a keyhole may be created to access the brain to fulfill the following purposes:

  • To drain out cerebrospinal fluid in case of hydrocephalus by inserting a shunt into the ventricles
  • To treat Parkinson’s disease by inserting a deep brain stimulator (DBS)
  • To insert an intracranial pressure monitor
  • To conduct needle biopsy, where a small sample of abnormal tissue is removed for study
  • For stereotactic hematoma aspiration, in which a blood clot is drained out
  • For insertion of an endoscope to clip aneurysms and for the removal of small tumors

When there are complex craniotomies involved, the procedure may be referred to as a skull base surgery.  In this kind of surgery, a small portion of the skull is removed from the bottom of the brain. This is the region where delicate arteries, veins, and cranial nerves exit the skull. Complicated planning is done to plan such craniotomies and understand the location of the lesions. This type of approach is usually employed for:

  • The removal or treatment of large brain tumors and aneurysm in the brain
  • Treatment after a skull fracture or major injury like a gunshot
  • The removal of a malignant tumor affecting the bony skull

Primary brain tumors are much less common than secondary brain tumors. Primary ones are found to originate very close to the brain itself or in the tissues very close to it, such as the covering membranes of the brain, including the meninges, cranial nerves, pineal, or pituitary gland. It begins with normal cells, which at a later period undergoes some mutational errors in their DNA. The mutation triggers cells to grow and divide at a very high rate while healthy cells keep dying around it. This results in a mass of abnormal cells which gives rise to a tumor. Unlike primary tumors, the secondary tumors begin as cancer elsewhere and spread to the brain.

Symptoms of brain tumor

  • Different patterns of a headache
  • Headaches get more frequent and acutely painful
  • Nausea
  • Blurred vision, double vision, or loss of peripheral vision
  • Loss of sensation in the arm or any leg gradually
  • Balance difficulty
  • Speech problems with confusion in simple matters
  • Hearing problems
  • Personality change
  • Sudden seizures and attacks or bouts of pain

Types of Craniotomy

No matter what the goal of the surgery is, it is best to ensure that the incision is made to address the intracranial lesion keeping some principles in mind. A wide variety of intracranial processes can be done via a craniotomy with a different variety of incisions. Some of these variations include frontal craniotomy, pterional craniotomy, temporal craniotomy, decompression craniectomy, and suboccipital craniotomy.

How is Craniotomy performed?

  • An intravenous line is first placed in the arm and general anaesthesia is employed while the patient lies on the operating table.
  • When the patient is no more awake, the head is placed in a 3-pin skull fixing the device. This is attached to a table and keeps the head in a fixed position all throughout the procedure.
  • An insertion of a lumbar drain is made in the lower back to drain out the cerebrospinal fluid. A relaxation drug for the brain named mannitol can be administered at this stage.
  • With an antiseptic, the skull is prepared and an incision is made usually behind the hairline. A good cosmetic result is achieved after the surgery and a hair sparing technique, which requires shaving only one-fourth inch-wide area along the incision proposed is aimed. At times, the total area of the incision may be shaved.
  • The skin and muscles are then removed from the bone and folded back, burr holes are made in the skull using a drill.
  • A saw is introduced through the holes made and cuts the bone flap’s outline. The protective covering of the brain named dura is exposed after the craniotome (the saw) removes the bone flap. This bone flap is kept aside securely to be attached back again after the surgery.
  • Once the dura is opened with surgical scissors, the surgeon folds it back to access the brain. There are retractors placed on the brain to have a corridor opened gently in the brain to address the region requiring removal or repair. 
  • Loupes are used by neurosurgeons, which are special magnifying glasses or an operating microscope to get a view of the delicate nerves and vessels.
  • The brain is very tightly enclosed within the skull and hence, removal of tissues cannot be done easily to repair problems.
  • Therefore, a variety of tools and instruments are employed to work in the deep circuits of the brain like drills, lasers, ultrasonic aspirators (used to break tumours and have the pieces suctioned), dissectors, long handled scissors, and of course computer-aided guidance.
  • Evoked potential monitoring may also be employed to stimulate the specific cranial nerves and the responses generated are monitored. This step ensures that the nerves are functioning properly and not getting damaged as a result of the surgery.
  • After the problem is rectified, the retractors are released and dura is closed along with sutures and the bone flap is placed in its original position and secured with titanium screws and plates. These screws and plates remain permanently in place to support the region and can be felt under the skin.
  • A drain can also be kept as is for some time. It helps collect blood and fluids from the area that is subjected to the surgery. T
  • he skin and muscles are sutured together and a soft turban-like adhesive is placed as dressing over the incision.

Recovery from Craniotomy

  • The patient is shifted to a recovery room where vital signs are monitored after he or she is in complete senses and the effect of the anaesthesia completely wears off.
  • Drowsiness, nausea, and headache are common in craniotomy recovery surgery. Hands, fingers, and toes must be moved frequently to avoid the formation of blood clots.
  • Anticonvulsant medications may be provided and a nurse may keep asking simple questions to figure out alertness.
  • Hospital stay varies from two to three days or even two weeks, depending on the complications that may result.
  • After discharge, keep away from strenuous activities. Some exercises may be prescribed for the slow movement of head and neck.
  • You should notify your doctor about any increase in temperature or infection observed at the sites of the incision. Bathing instructions should be strictly followed.
  • It almost takes around two to eight weeks for complete recovery. Keep visiting your doctor for follow-up checkup or as instructed. Contact your doctor immediately in case of loss of mental function, stroke, seizure, or nerve damage.

Patient Stories

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the health care infrastructure of India / Why should opt for India as a destination for your medical treatment?
India is a large country with a rapidly expanding system of healthcare. Like many other countries, there are public and private hospitals in India. This also includes healthcare at three levels.
  • The primary level of healthcare includes Sub Centres and Primary Health Centres.
  • At the secondary level are District Hospitals and smaller Sub-District hospitals. These are the first referral units, mostly from the primary healthcare centres.
  • Finally, the top level of health care provided is the tertiary level, which consists of Medical Colleges and Specialized Hospitals.
Since India boasts of housing a large number of people, the requirement for good healthcare and treatment in India is always there. And this also means prompt delivery of the service. Most of the treatment in India has to be offered at reasonable costs to enable people of all classes to access it. Hence, you can be assured that this country will be a great destination for your medical treatment whichever hospital in India you wish to choose.
What are the conditions of the hospitals in India? Are they JCI certified? What is the quality of the support staff in the hospitals?
The Joint Commission International (JCI) is a global leader in health care accreditation. JCI accreditation is considered a gold standard in worldwide health care. It provides the most skilled and experienced healthcare professionals in the medical industry, as evaluators of the rigorous international standards in healthcare quality and patient safety.
Here are some JCI certified hospitals in India:
  • Fortis Escorts Health Institutes, Delhi
  • Columbia Asia Referral Hospital, Bangalore
  • Fortis Hospital, Bangalore
  • Apollo Hospital, Chennai
  • Sri Ramachandra Medical Center, Chennai
  • Ahalia Foundation Eye Hospital, Kerala
  • Rajagiri Hospital, Kochi
  • Asian Heart Institute, Mumbai
  • Fortis Hospital, Mumbai
  • Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital, Mumbai
  • SevenHills Hospitals, Mumbai
  • Apex Heart Institute (A Unit Of TCVS Pvt)
  • Apollo Gleneagles Hospitals, Kolkata.
  • Fortis Hospitals Ltd, Mulund, Mumbai
  • Narayana Multispeciality Hospital Jaipur (A Unit of Narayana Hrudayalaya Ltd.)
Hospitals in India are ever-changing to accommodate more people with up to date technology. Hospitals in India also attract patients from other countries because of their diverse range of services. Apart from allopathy and conventional treatment procedures, the government of India, along with the hospitals in India also promote alternative medical treatment options like Ayurveda, homeopathy, and yoga. All in all, you will find great options for any kind of treatment in India.
Are the doctors/surgeons in India of the best quality?
Doctors and surgeons in India have to get through examinations and continue to uphold the standard of education that is provided to them. Since doctors get exposure to various patients during their course, they are able to diagnose and treat a wide range of diseases and illnesses. Therefore, one can rely on the doctors of India for their medical services.
What is the process for obtaining a medical visa in India?
The e-Medical Visa for India is an online travel authorization for foreign nationals who wish to seek medical treatment in the country. A medical Indian visa allows the holder to enter the country 3 times.

The e-Medical visa is a short term visa granted for medical treatment reasons. This type of visa is only granted to the patient and not to their family members.

Foreign nationals can acquire an India e-Medical visa by filling in an online application form. This simple process can be done from the comfort of the traveler’s home or office, avoiding a trip to an embassy or consulate.

Applicants must submit their basic personal information, including their full name, nationality, and date of birth. They must also provide a contact email address and phone number as well as their passport details. Finally, some security questions must be answered.

The form is quick and easy to fill out. The approved India medical visa is then delivered to the applicant’s email address within a few business days.
What support services does MediGence provide in India?
MediGence enables you to plan and manage your medical decisions better. These are some of our services offered:
  • Expert Opinion
    We help you seek an Expert Opinion on your diagnosis and treatment from an experienced team of doctors at MediGence and specialists from a reputable hospital.
  • Hospital Recommendation
    We recommend a hospital or a healthcare institution that is best suited for you, based on your ailment and its criticality.
  • 360-degree Hospital Review
    We give you a transparent and holistic view of the hospital and its infrastructure, accreditation, facilities, and expertise to give you confidence.
  • Doctor Validation and Communication
    We share a comprehensive profile of the treating doctor and also arrange a call to clear queries regarding treatment if needed.
  • Options to Choose From
    Based on your choice of destination and other preferences, we provide you multiple options with respect to hospitals and doctors to choose from.
  • 24X7 Patient Care Support
    A dedicated patient case manager stays in constant touch with you to help you at every step of the decision-making process and resolve queries that you may have.
  • Transparent Treatment Cost and Other Expenses
    We give a clear and accurate indication of the total cost of treatment including treatment, stay, meals, and other expenses.
  • Visa Assistance
    We provide and help prepare documentation for visa approval and coordinate with the embassy to expedite the visa process.
  • Accommodation Arrangements
    We propose to you a choice of accommodation based on your preference such as long stay, short stay, or luxury properties.
Which are the best cities in India for medical treatment?
India is a beautiful country spread across the vast expanse of the Asian subcontinent. Most of the metro cities have hospitals, in India, with varying levels of infrastructure. Depending on your need and medical service, you can visit your choice of city.
The capital of India is Delhi and has many renowned hospitals like the All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Max Super speciality Hospital Fortis Hospitals, etc.
Other cities offering effective medical care include Bangalore, Chennai, Mumbai, and Hyderabad. These cities come under some of the major metro cities of India.

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