A procedure to remove frontal lobe tumors in the brain, a biftrontal craniotomy—performed while the patient is under general anesthesia and their head has been secured to prevent motion during the operation—begins with a surgeon making an incision in the scalp (known as a coronal incision, it begins from one ear and continues over the top of the head to the other ear).
The skin is then folded away to expose the skull, after which multiple holes are drilled through the bone. Using a bone saw, the surgeon cuts between these holes in order to remove a section of the bone (the skull flap, which is set aside for later). The outermost membrane layer around the brain—the dura—is excised and folded back to expose the brain at the site of the tumor.
The surgeon retracts undamaged brain tissue to isolate the tumor, and then carefully removes all or as much of it as possible. The previously opened dura is then closed and sutured and the skull flap returned to its original site and secured with a plate, screws and, if necessary, wires, after which the scalp is folded back and stapled or sutured closed. During these steps, and if the surgeon deems it necessary, a small drainage tube may be inserted to drain away any fluid that may accumulate.
Post-surgery a patient can expect to remain in the hospital for several days, where constant monitoring will help ensure the procedure was successful and there are no complications. And although full recovery is dependent on the size, type and severity of the tumor as wells the patient’s health, generally a return to normal daily activities can be achieved with two to three months.