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Doctors live-stream awake brain surgery on Facebook

Posted at 1:01 PM, Oct 31, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-31 13:10:34-04

Methodist Dallas Medical Center livestreamed on Facebook a portion of awake brain surgery performed on 25-year-old Jenna Schardt to remove a mass of blood vessels in her brain that had affected Schardt's ability to talk.

"It manifested as some stroke-like symptoms. So they needed to take that out. But it happened to be right near a part of the brain that is well-known to be involved in your language abilities, Associated Press reporter Lauran Neergaard said.

Thousands watched the procedure that lasted about 45-minutes as it was livestreamed on Facebook.

Neegard said "Awake brain surgery has been going on for a really long time. What was unique about this particular operation was its educational value. By livestreaming it. Lots of people got to see what this is all about in a different way than if you see a dramatized version on a TV show. And it probably allayed the fear of people who may have to face this themselves. To be able to show step by step."

Schardt awoke from a light anesthesia she was under as her skull was opened up.

Schardt conscious and smiling talked to doctors during the operation.

The procedure was narrated by Dr. Nimesh Patel, chief of neurosurgery at the Methodist Dallas Medical Center.

Dr. Patel also took viewers' questions during the live stream of the operation.