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Skull Base Surgery, Abroad

Skull Base Surgery cost:
{the cost covers all destination medical & logistics costs}
International Destinations: India, Jordan, Mexico, South Korea, Turkey

Skull base surgery is the term used to describe surgical procedures conducted in the area of the skull on which our brain rests. The region contains the orbital fossa (i.e. the cavity for the eyeballs), ear canal, all the 12 cranial nerves and essential arteries, namely, the carotid and vertebral arteries along with the lymphatic drainage system. Skull base surgeries are conducted for the treatment of benign or malignant tumors, birth defects, complicated infections and head trauma. Though conventionally, skull base was considered inoperable and surgical interventions have given unsatisfactory outcomes in the past, modern technology has improved the results and reduced the risk of neurological complications considerably. It is a highly complex and a delicate surgery and requires a strong and robust healthcare infrastructure and highly trained surgeons to successfully conduct the surgery. Medical tourism destinations namely South Korea, India, Jordan, Mexico and Turkey have hospitals of international repute and quality standards that are apt to provide the best surgical care to skull base surgery patients.

What is skull base? The need for skull base surgery:

Skull base is a term which is used to describe the region of our head that lies immediately below our brain and performs the effective function of supporting the brain. This region contains several essential nerves and tissues which control some of the most essential senses of our body along with some major arteries supplying blood to the brain. The skull base comprises of the following essential organs,

  • Orbital Fossa: The orbital fossa is a space in the skull where our eyeballs are placed.
  • Ear Canal: This is where our internal ear is placed, which performs the essential auditory sensory function.
  • Arteries: The region contains two carotid arteries and two vertebral arteries that are responsible for blood supply to the brain and the spinal cord.
  • Cranial nerves: There are twelve cranial nerves which perform essential sensory functions like seeing, hearing, smelling and taste. Other functions include blinking or focusing the eye, skin senses of face, etc.

The skull base is a highly complex region which requires great surgical skills to operate. Errors can be fatal or result in a life time of irreparable morbidity.

Skull base surgeries are performed to treat diseases like,

  • Benign and malignant tumors (cancers) of the brain
  • Congenital abnormalities or birth defects
  • Vascular lesions like Aneurysms, malformation of arteries or veins, and fistulas
  • Manage complicated head traumas
  • Infections affecting any organ in the base of the skull

Skull base surgery: The procedure

Skull base surgeries can be classified broadly in two categories depending upon the nature in which the base of the skull is accessed. Due to the location and proximity to other vital structures of the human head, skull base surgeries present unique challenges to the surgeon and emphasize on the need for greater precision and accuracy to avoid morbidity and mortality.

  • Open Surgery: A conventional procedure in which incisions are made on the face and the cranium and a small portion of the skull bone is removed to gain access to the site. This surgery is recommended in the management of certain tumors or accidental trauma cases. After the procedure, reconstruction of the soft tissue and the bone is done to restore most of the functions and appearance.
  • Minimal Invasive Surgery: An advanced surgical intervention procedure which allows access to the skull base with minimal or no external incisions. Access is gained by using endoscopes or visualization using real time MRI or image guided technology.
    • Endoscopy: It is a procedure, where the skull base is accessed through a thin camera-fixed-tube through the nose or the sinuses. This mechanism provides access to various regions in the skull with the advantage of reducing the extent of surgery and reducing hospitalization stay and complications.
    • Image-guided surgery: Surgery is conducted using imaging technology like CT scan or MRI, which help the surgeon as navigation tools to confirm the precise location of the target organ. These devices are used during the procedure which enhance the efficacy, accuracy and precision of the skull base surgery
    • Real-time MRI: Using Real time Magnetic resonance imaging gives live images of the patient’s skull base and the surrounding structures during the procedure. This procedure considerably reduces the extent of surgery and need for subsequent and additional skull base surgeries.

Reconstruction after a skull base surgery is imperative to ensure that the brain does not herniated through the nose or the surgical cavity or avoid the leakage of the cerebrospinal fluid. Invariably for reconstruction, tissue is taken from another part of the body. Bones from other parts of the skull/body also may be used in reconstruction procedures.

Pre operative evaluation for Skull base Surgery:

  • The clinical history of the patient is evaluated. Symptoms are used to evaluate the condition of the patient and the seriousness of the condition
  • Detailed diagnostic imaging tests are conducted using Computed Tomography (CT) or and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to analysis the internal condition of the skull base.
  • In cases of tumors of the skull base a fine needle aspiration is done to collect a sample of the internal tissue. This tissue is sent for histopathology analysis to understand the nature of the tumor and the subsequent course of action.

Post operative care after skull base surgery:

  • Staying physically active will help hasten recovery and have several benefits. It stimulates the release of endorphins (a mood elevation hormone). Simple stretches or light work like walking or gardening will help the patient. However patients are requested to refrain from overstressing or over exerting themselves.
  • Interaction with friends and relatives is most recommended. It will help relieve stress, anxiety and alleviate depression.
  • Alternative and complementary therapies like Yoga, Tai Chi, Visualization, etc will also substantially help the patient recover the stress of the procedure.

Outcomes of skull base surgery for cancer patients:

Currently treatment of cancers in the skull base through skull base surgical techniques using multi-specialty approach, as discussed here, has a five year survival rate ranging from 56-70%.

Skull base Surgery in India:

India over the past few years has increasingly become the most sought after medical tourism destination across the world. The countries health infrastructure is one of the best in the world, which provides high quality medical care services at a cost that is less than half of that which is charged in the United States. The leading hospitals in the country treat several hundred medical tourists from US annually

Skull base Surgery in Mexico:

Ranked as one of the countries in the list of top 70 best countries based on its healthcare infrastructure, by the World Health Organization, Mexico is the most preferred healthcare destination for American patients. Mexican hospitalsprovide best quality of services at significantly lower rates compared to the counterpart hospitals in the United States.

Skull base Surgery in Turkey:

Turkey is claiming to be one of the best medical tourism destinations due to highly trained manpower, improving quality standards and investment in advanced technology and equipments. There is a steady increase in medical tourists annually to the country to seek good quality of care at affordable prices.

Skull base Surgery in Jordan:

Hospitals and doctors in Jordan have been catering to tourists from other parts of Western Asia and have gained substantial progress in terms of catering to international patients. The country has invested considerable in enhancing its health infrastructure to make it comparable to international standards and to cater to patients from United States.

Skull base Surgery in South Korea:

South Korea has recently started upgrading its healthcare infrastructure to cater to international patients from across the world. With latest technology, trained medical teams from abroad and international quality standards, the country is one of the best destinations for tourists seeking high quality low cost care.

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Medical Tourism Corporation facilitates affordable skull base neurosurgery overseas at world-class destinations. Fill out the free estimate request form for a free quote & more information.

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