Simulator that Makes Brain Swelling Predictions to help Surgeons

Admin | Published 2016-10-07 01:36

Surgeons have cut out parts of the skulls of patients suffering from brain trauma for some time already.

New simulation tool developed by a team of researchers for Stanford University and the University of Oxford will help make the procedure a lot easier and safer. Method  called "Decompressive craniectomy", gives the swelling brain space to expand in order to save a person's life after a head injury.

But, it could also lead to complications. See, when the brain increases out of a hole, parts of its nerve cells tend to stretch and break. Potential complications can be minimized, when this tool suggests surgeons the optimal place and size of the hole, regarding the type of the injury.

To research and create the tool, the team studied medical scans showing the amount of swelling for different types of brain injuries. After that they created mathematical estimates that can predict how an injury would affect different parts of the brain.

When they are done shaping the system, they ran certain simulation scenarios to find that the serious damage will happen, if parts of nerve cells stretch around and above 30 percent.

Resulting simulation, shows the most affected parts of the brain in red, areas that sustained not serious damage in green and safe parts in blue. all of this to give surgeons a guide to decide the best place to use the decompressive craniectomy.

Creation of this is still in its early stages, but there is a hope surgeons can help erase some of the flaws of it, thus helping it develop.
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