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Brain Mapping

What Is Brain Mapping?

During a brain mapping procedure, a neurologist identifies the parts of your brain that control different functions. Doctors then use this information to perform brain treatments and surgeries without disturbing your brain function.

Although doctors know which parts of the brain control different functions, they need brain mapping to fix intricate problems in the brain. New Jersey’s top neurosurgical and spine team at Premier Brain & Spine treat patients using brain mapping techniques. Their ambulatory surgery center is equipped with advanced brain mapping tools to give you accurate life-changing results.

How Is Brain Mapping Done?

Intraoperative brain mapping, or awake brain surgery, is done during a craniotomy. Generally, you’re anesthetized to start the operation, woken up to perform brain mapping, then put back to sleep. You don’t feel any pain during the procedure because there are no pain receptors in the brain, and your scalp remains anesthetized.

For brain mapping, your doctor probes your brain with an electrical stimulator while asking you questions and guiding you to do tasks such as:

  • Looking at images
  • Counting
  • Talking
  • Wiggling your toes or fingers

Your neurosurgeon uses your performance to understand which parts of your brain are responsible for specific functions. They take diagnostic images during the operation to compare them to ones taken beforehand. All this information is put together to create your brain map.

Why Is Brain Mapping Done?

Brain mapping is done to remove brain tumors that are too close to critical areas of the brain. A brain map allows neurosurgeons to remove as much of the tumor as possible without affecting the healthy parts of your brain. Brain mapping enables doctors to preserve critical functions, including:

  • Sensory
  • Motor
  • Language

Removing a tumor without brain mapping could leave you with a poorer quality of life than before the surgery. Without brain mapping, many brain tumors would be inoperable.

Can Other Conditions Be Treated with Brain Mapping?

Researchers and doctors use brain mapping to understand how the brain works and develop better care methods. Besides brain tumors, brain mapping can be used for diagnosing and treating conditions such as:

Scientists also use non-surgical brain mapping to better understand mental health. Advanced images can show how different neurons fire in the brain. This can help doctors develop new medications and treatments.

Who Does Brain Mapping?

Brain mapping is performed in an ambulatory surgical center by a team of doctors and nurses. The doctors necessary to do brain mapping include:

  • Neurosurgeons, who are trained in the anatomy of the brain and various techniques to remove tumors
  • Anesthesiologists, who sedate you, then wake you up and keep you comfortable for brain mapping
  • Neuroradiologists, who specialize in taking images of the brain during brain mapping

Premier Brain & Spine has one of the best surgical teams in New Jersey for brain mapping and other neurosurgical treatments. You can trust them to get you through any procedure with excellent results. Contact the nearest center to schedule an appointment today.

Updated on Jul 27, 2022 by Dr. David Wells-Roth (Neurosurgeon) of Premier Brain & Spine

Premier Brain & Spine
10 Parsonage Rd, Suite 208A
Edison, NJ 08837
(732) 258-0190