CHICAGO, May 1, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Cancer Treatment Centers of America (CTCA) at Midwestern Regional Medical Center (Midwestern) is among the first hospitals in the country to offer a new minimally invasive surgery for patients with deep subcortical tumors and cysts. The new approach integrates several advancements in neurosurgery, allowing doctors to resect tumors that were often previously deemed inoperable due to factors such as location within the brain and tumor size. CTCA at Midwestern is the first hospital in Chicago to pioneer the Six Pillar Approach, which resects the tumor through an opening as small as a dime, and is one of only 11 hospitals in the nation currently offering the procedure.
"While there have been tremendous advancements in minimally invasive neurosurgery over the years, there have been few options for resecting cancerous lesions in the deep subcortical regions of the brain," said Juan Alzate, MD, neurosurgeon at CTCA at Midwestern. "This approach uses the technological advancements we have gained over time, such as brain mapping and real-time navigation, and marries them with new tools to help surgeons safely access and remove the brain abnormality."
During the procedure, surgeons access the brain through an opening the size of a dime, and use brain mapping, GPS navigation technology and a tool called the BrainPath ® to safely move through the natural folds and delicate fibers of the brain to reach the tumor. This allows surgeons to displace tissue rather than cutting it, thereby helping to lower the risk of damage to healthy brain tissue and to lower the risk of complications from surgery. Once in place, the BrainPath creates a clear passageway for surgeons to maintain access to the tumor. They then use a tool the size of a pencil to resect or remove the mass."This is an exciting breakthrough because it presents another option for patients with cancer," said Alzate. "As surgeons, our goal is to remove as much of the tumor as possible and we need to have a myriad of tools in our arsenal to accomplish successful resection."