Nearly 22.6 million people suffer from neurological problems in the world and 13.8 million of them require neurosurgery.
The United Arab Emirates offers the best healthcare services. The World Bank ranks Dubai and Abu Dhabi as the top 2nd and 3rd places for medical tourism destinations on the globe.
Medical tourism has gradually increased in the Arab world. According to some reports, UAE witnessed around 5,00,000 medical travellers in 2020 which was a greater increase than the 3,37,000 medical travellers in the year 2018.
What is Neurosurgery?
All the surgical treatments for neurological problems of the brain, spinal cord, spinal column and peripheral nerves all over the body fall under the category of neurosurgery.
It can be a neurological disorder, traumatic brain or spinal cord injury and can be for an adult or paediatric patient based on the requirement.
Who Requires Neurosurgery?
Neurological ailments are broad and diverse. Their severity is largely dependent on the seriousness of the symptoms, and the discomfort that the patient experiences.
Neurosurgery is performed on patients who have experienced
Traumatic brain or spine injuries, skull fractures and spinal fractures
Sports-related head, spine and neck injuries
Carotid artery blockages
Congenital problems leading to intracranial tumours in conditions of Chiari malformation, neurofibromatosis, Hippel-Lindau disease and tuberous sclerosis.
Other pediatric and neonatal problems such as Spina Bifida.
Cerebrovascular problems like aneurysms, cavernoma, arteriovenous malformations and arteriovenous fistula.
What Types of Treatment are Categorized as Neurosurgery?
The progress in science and technology has combined many advanced techniques into neurosurgical procedures.
Open surgery: A small hole called a bone flap is made to access the internal soft brain tissues. After the surgical process, the bone flap is secured back on the skull with the help of screws and pallets. It is also called a craniotomy.
Minimally invasive surgery: A small opening is made in the skull and an endoscope is inserted into the opening for operative purposes. These are associated with the least damage to the body and are operated with precise equipment.
Endonasal Endoscopic surgery: An endoscope is inserted into the nasal passages to treat tumours or problems in the front part of the brain.
Radiosurgery: This neurosurgery treatment is done for the treatment of brain and other neurological tumours. High-intensity radiations are focussed on a small specific target area having a tumour.
Microsurgery: It is performed to treat abnormal brain swellings or aneurysms. Highly precise microscopes and neuro-endoscopes are employed in surgery. This ensures only the correct blood vessels or arteries are being operated leaving the surrounding ones open and unblocked.
Endovascular surgery: Similar to endo-nasal endoscopic surgeries, endovascular neurosurgery also involves the passing of tools however this is into the patient's blood vessels to diagnose and treat the particular disease condition.
Deep brain stimulation: A pulse generator is inserted into the brain to generate electrical impulses. Minimally invasive approaches are followed in this kind of neuro surgeries.
Awake brain surgeries: The neurosurgeon treats the patient by checking the responses. This is done while the patient is awake under local anaesthetic. This is performed for correcting the abnormalities of speech, vision, and seizures and the doctor checks for the patient's responses during the operating procedure.
Does Neurosurgery Require Special Equipment?
Neurosurgeries are quite complicated surgeries and require highly precise and advanced equipment for performing. It's the skill of the neurosurgeon that ensures the success of neurosurgery.
Imaging techniques such as computed tomography (CT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), positron emission technique (PET), and intraoperative MRI are used to support the ongoing surgical process.
In these neurosurgeries, the neurosurgeons understand the 3D structure of the brain and perform the surgery with precision and better results.
In fluorescence-guided surgeries, special dyes are used to distinguish the healthy brain tissues and tumorous tissues of a patient.
Intraoperative neuromonitoring (IOM) checks the cranial nerve and overall body functioning. This monitoring has raised the success rate of the most complicated neurosurgeries.
What to Expect Immediately After Neurosurgery?
Neurosurgeries are major operating procedures and the patients are checked in every aspect. Their pupils, heart rate, breathing rate and other vital functionings are deeply observed.
The patients are put on sedatives post-surgery and may feel drowsy. In most cases, they are under painkiller medication.
After the surgical process, patients are shifted from the operation room to an intensive care unit (ICU) or high-dependency unit (HDU) for checking the overall functioning of the body.
The brain functioning is under close monitoring during the ICU stay.
The incisions are sore until 5 days after which the doctor removes the stitches and the operated wounds are dressed up.
Some doctors use biodegradable sutures which can easily degrade into the patient’s body. The minimally operated surgeries do not require suture removal.
How Long Will the Hospital Stay for Neurosurgery?
For major surgeries like craniotomy, the hospital stay will be 3-4 days. In deep brain stimulation, the neurosurgeon has to closely examine the patient's neurological responses for 24 hours.
Only after ensuring the normalized physiological state does the neurosurgeon allow the discharge of the patient.
In case the patients experience any postoperative difficulties, the length of hospital stay will be longer.
It is mandatory for attending the medical follow-up post-discharge.
Post-Surgical Care in Neurosurgery Cases
Any painkillers or antibiotics prescribed by the doctor should be mandatorily used.
Most neurosurgery patients are advised not to lift weights, and bend their heads downwards. Instead, the patients can sit on their knees having their backs straight. They are recommended to sleep having their heads in a slightly raised position.
Any signs of swelling, decreasing levels of consciousness with sensory loss, seizures, facial droop, nausea and vomiting should not be ignored and reported to the concerned neurosurgery centre where the patient has been recently operated on.
Post-surgical care should aim at regaining the patient's strength and ability in handling regular activities.
Prolonged hospitalization, chronic pain and regaining body posture, coordination of balance are some major challenges in neurosurgery patients.
Many neurosurgery patients are prescribed rehabilitation care where certified therapists train the patients so that they regain a normal and healthy life.
Physical and occupational rehabilitation therapies help neurosurgery patients in managing pain and perform their daily life activities.
Burjeel Hospital, Dubai: This hospital has 14 bedded ICUs and 10 operating rooms with the latest equipment and has the best-trained neurosurgeons. It also has a laminar airflow system to maintain an internationally acceptable sterile environment that minimizes infection risks.
Medeor Hospital 24x7, Dubai: This hospital provides the highest medical excellence and is equipped with diagnostic and medical imaging technology like 1.5 tesla MRI, high-end 160 CT scan and dual detector x-ray systems.
LLH Hospital, Abu Dhabi: This hospital is accredited by JCL (Joint Commission International). It provides the highest standard of services across the UAE and for this reason, it received the Sheikh Khalifa Excellence Award (SKEA) and the prestigious European Quality Award (EQA).
Life Care Hospital, Abu Dhabi: This hospital is accredited by JCL (Joint Commission International) and has specially trained medical professionals and has treated over 2 million patients in the past 13 years.
Burjeel Medical City, Abu Dhabi: It has specialised equipment for brain surgeries in cancer and traumas, and has a helipad for patient transport. It has 10 operation theatres and specialised ICUs for high-quality treatment.
Dr Fadel Fouad Gendy: He is a leading neurosurgeon with 31 years of experience. His area of interest is treating brain haemorrhage, tumours of the brain and spinal cord, spinal trauma and fixation, head trauma, and minimally invasive surgeries of the spine, back and neck.
Dr Muhammed Chishti: He is a renowned neurosurgeon having 30+ years of experience. He particularly deals with brain aneurysms, hydrocephalus, craniosynostosis, degenerative spinal diseases and spinal dysphoria.
Dr Mounir Haider Haider: He is a reputed neurosurgeon with an extensive 30+ years of experience. He is an expert in treating people with trauma and tumours of the brain and spine, blocked arteries, aneurysms, birth defects and chronic lower back pain.
Dr Nicandro Figueiredo: He is a leading spinal neurosurgeon having 24+ years of experience. His area of interest is spinal deformity corrections, spinal traumas, cysts and tumours.
Neurosurgery is one of the most complicated surgeries in the medical world. The high-quality equipment and precise diagnostic procedures make the costs of neurosurgeries in UAE comparatively higher.
Is Choosing UAE for a Neurosurgery A Good Decision?
UAE is definitely a good option for neurosurgery for patients around the globe. The UAE's healthcare system is suitable for international patients and the ultra-modern architecture hospitals in UAE are equipped with the highly precise and latest equipment.
Medical care and the success rate of surgical procedures are high in the UAE, making it a good choice for patients to choose as a place for neurosurgery.
Another positive aspect of choosing the UAE as a place to have neurosurgery is that doctors speak English and European languages fluently and many hospitals also offer translation services to help international patients.
Apart from the medical facilities, other factors such as the location and tourist attractions in the United Arab Emirates make it the best destination for travel. Airport infrastructure and the ability of tourists to travel to the UAE from various countries around the world make it the best choice for a neurosurgery destination.
What Is The Medical Visa Procedure For Arabic Estates?
Hospitals providing medical services registered and certified in the UAE where a patient seeking treatment must apply to the UAE visa authorities.
Patient entry permits for Dubai are issued by the General Directorate of Residency and Foreign Affairs (GDRFA).
For the other seven Arab Emirates, the visa-issuing authority is the Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship (ICA).
What is the validity period for a Medical Visa in UAE?
After obtaining the UAE patient entrance permit, the patient has to plan their medical travel within 60 days and can stay up to 90 days for their treatment after entering UAE.
They can get single-entry permission that allows access to water only once and get treatment.
Another option is to get a multiple-entry visa which allows multiple entries each with a maximum of 90 days.
If a patient wishes to extend the length of stay, the healthcare provider is required to provide valid documentation explaining the patient's medical condition and the need for an extended treatment plan.
What Documents Should a Patient Get During the Visa Process?
Documents required for a visa include:
A Medical letter from a hospital intending to provide medical treatment
Medical insurance proof.
Documental profs of financial stability
Role of Vaidam Healthcare
Vaidam is accredited by NABH and has been helping medical travellers from different social, cultural and financial backgrounds to obtain quality and best healthcare treatment in different nations.
UAE is one such place where medical travellers can find the best healthcare system. To get support from Vaidam’s team, feel free to raise a request quote.
The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is rapidly changing the healthcare system. Its excellent hospitals provide the best healthcare services to patients from all over the world. The low cost of treatment and the easy medical visa process driven by medical professionals make the UAE the best choice for neurosurgery for patients around the world.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Should a patient shave their head for neurosurgery? Answer: The patient's hair is shaved prior to scalp surgery to reduce the risk of infection and to facilitate the addition of drapes and closures.
What is the success of nerve surgery?
Answer: The usual success rate for nerve surgery is around 50-70%.
What are the risks of nerve surgery?
Answer: Seizures, comas, blood clots, and surgical site infections are risks associated with neurosurgery.