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article imageTeen listens to music during six-hour brain tumor surgery

By Chris V. Thangham     Dec 18, 2008 in Health
A teen listened to music on his iPod while undergoing brain surgery to remove a tumor. Doctors at a London hospital needed him awake for the surgery.
Gavin Brooke, 18, has been through brain tumor surgery before, but it wasn’t successful; doctors were unable to remove all cancer cells from his brain. A few weeks ago, Brooke was forced to go through the surgery again.
Since the surgery was complex and the doctors wanted him to stay awake to avoid any brain damage, they let Brooke listen to music while they performed the surgery.
Andrew McElroy, the head neurosurgeon of the successful surgery told the Sun newspaper:
"The tumor was in a very difficult place that controls the movement of the body...And we had to ensure we didn't damage the surrounding area. A few millimeters too far could have paralyzed him, so I let him listen to his iPod. We talked to him all the way through and he was happy with his music on."
The doctors connected the iPod to the operating theater’s sound system and allowed Gavin to listen to music for the entire six-hour operation.
The music helped Gavin stay awake and doctors didn’t find it disconcerting.
Gavin chose “Apologize” by Timbaland featuring One Republic, garage and some R&B music.
Gavin is doing well after the surgery and thanked his doctors:
“I’d like to tell other people who might be having the op not to worry...They are in good hands with the NHS.”
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