To make sure her finer motor functions remain intact, she did something wild: playing the violin during the surgery!
The Violin Is Her Passion
Dagmar Turner is a committed violinist. She plays in many choral societies and the Isle of Wight Symphony Orchestra. After years of keeping the illness at bay through radiotherapy, it became clear in 2019 that the tumor had to be removed.
She had a consultation with Professor Keyoumars Ashkan to discuss her options. He is a highly-recommended neurosurgeon at King’s College Hospital, which performs around 400 tumor removals every year. Sometimes, the patients would be woken up to perform language tests, but this was the first time a patient played the violin during the procedure.
A Successful Surgery
The right frontal lobe of the brain controls fine motor functions, and Turner’s tumor was very close to the center that controls her fine left-hand functions. The precise use of both her hands is quite essential for her ability to play the violin. Being a music enthusiast himself, Professor Keyoumars Ashkan took the time to plan out the surgery carefully with his colleagues. Under the careful watch of a team of surgeons, therapists, and anesthesiologists, Turner was woken up during the procedure to play the violin, making sure her motor functions are ok.
The operation was quite successful, and the skilled surgeons managed to remove over 90% of the tumor, while Turner even retained full functionality of her left hand. Being a violinist has been her passion since the age of 10, and, thanks to these fine surgeons, she’ll be back playing with her Symphonic Orchestra in no time!