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Brain surgeon calls self ‘Tiger Woods of neurosurgery'

By Chris V. Thangham     Jan 29, 2007 in Health
Dr. Takanori Fukushima calls himself as "Tiger Woods of neurosurgery", is considered one of the best in the world in brain surgery.
Dr. Takanori Fukushima compares plucking out brain tumors to measuring up for a birdie on the golf course. Both activities require concentration, quiet and precision. Going under the knife for heart surgery requires a team of experts.
It takes only one surgical mastermind to treat a brain tumor, aneurysm or other life-threatening condition inside the human skull.
"Cardiac surgery is like basketball," said Fukushima, a world-renowned neurosurgeon who treats patients at West Virginia University Hospitals. "You need teamwork and three or four physicians.
"Neurosurgery is a one-man, single-man operation. It's a simple technology. It's not mathematics, physics or computers."
Dr. Takanori Fukushima, has conducted thousands of neurosurgical procedure and some of them lasting as much as 36 hours. He has saved number of lives with this surgery, which is complicated and has to rely entirely on his own. He proclaims himself as the "Tiger Woods of neurosurgery." Everyone in the hospital and his patients agree to this. One of his patients, Martinos Peltekopoulos visited West Virginia, US to see him after being diagnosed with brain tumor. Without immediate surgery there was a high chance of death in a few years.
Brain tumors are created by abnormal and uncontrolled cell division, usually occurring in the brain itself, cranial nerves or spread from cancers in other organs.
There were 16,500 new cases of brain tumors reported in the United States in 2000.
Martinos saw a number of doctors both in Greece and in Europe but he was unable to find anyone to remove the brain tumor, which required a complex procedure with the risk of death in surgery. The only qualified person was Dr. Fukushima who took the case despite his busy schedule. In the surgery, Dr. Fukushima worked 8 hours to remove the brain tumor. It is too early to tell the success of this surgery. He said to the patient's mom that he is responsible for 70% of the Surgery procedure, the remaining 30% is upto God's will.
The next day he did another surgery to remove a larger size tumor. In the past 5 days of work, he has done 7 surgeries in total. He also did a 10 hour surgery for the Sen. William Sharpe, D-Lewis, who was treated for an aneurysm.
Busy man no doubt. He may not be popular as Tiger Woods, but surely he has saved a number of lives not major sportsmen or sportswomen can boast. He should call himself, "Fukushima of neurosurgery".
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