A patient at King’s College Hospital in London has played the violin while having brain surgery.
The medical team asked Dagmar Turner, 53, to play the violin to ensure parts of the brain that control hand movements and coordination were not damaged during the surgery.
Ms. Turner was diagnosed with a brain tumour in 2013.
The committed violinist, who plays in Isle of Wight Symphony Orchestra, was worried the surgery would result in the loss of her ability to play. Her tumour was located in the right frontal lobe of her brain, close to an area that controls the fine movement of her left hand.
Professor Keyoumars Ashkan, the consultant neurosurgeon at King’s College Hospital, came up with an idea to operate and reduce the risk.
The brain tumour specialist holds a degree in music and is an accomplished pianist and shared Ms. Turner’s desire to save her musical skills.
Before the surgery, doctors spent two hours carefully plotting her brain to identify areas that were active when she played the violin and those responsible for controlling language and movement.
Ms. Turner played the violin while her tumour was removed, while closely monitored by the anesthetists and a therapist.