Believe it or not, an Indian musician strummed on his guitar as doctors at a hospital in the southern city of Bengaluru performed a brain surgery on him to cure his crippled fingers of a rare movement disorder.
The successful brain operation — the first in India — was conducted recently by surgeons at the Bhagawan Mahaveer Jain Hospital on 37-year-old Abhishek Prasad who was fully awake during the surgery and gave live feedback to the doctors by playing the guitar.
Prasad, who had been suffering from “guitarist dystonia” for quite some time, has now been cured of the neurological disorder, said, doctors.
Musician’s dystonia is caused by the brain sending incorrect information to the muscles and is characterised by involuntary, prolonged muscle contractions, which cause affected parts of the body to be twisted into abnormal postures, according to Britain’s Dystonia Society.
In fact, Prasad, who left his job in the information technology sector to follow his passion — playing the guitar — developed musician’s dystonia that affected three fingers of his left hand in 2015 and was forced to abandon his passion for some time.
“Three of the fingers of my left hand — middle, fourth and the little finger — used to get stiff and stuck while playing the guitar. I was not able to follow my passion due to this,” he told the media.
During the operation, surgeons made an incision in the skull and inserted a 9 centimetres electrode to burn parts of the brain causing the disorder. As the brain has no ability to feel pain, only local anaesthesia was applied to the skin, said, doctors.
“Such surgeries require the patient to be awake and perform the function that is triggering the brain to misbehave. The idea is to gauge the patient’s reaction to the surgery as this disorder is specific to a task,” neurosurgeon Sharan Srinivasan told the media.
Prasad is a very happy person now and fully satisfied that he will be able to pursue his passion of playing the guitar again.
“But now it’s a great feeling for both me and the doctors. It was 100 percent result on the operation table itself. I’m very excited, finally now I can live my dream, can play my guitar again after one month of recovery,” he said.
“Now my fingers are completely listening to me, earlier my fingers were erect and changing from one chord to other was difficult,” Prasad added.
Doctors said that the surgery was the first in India.