Here’s something you probably haven’t seen before.
This week, King’s College Hospital in London released a video of a woman playing the violin while doctors performed brain surgery on her. That woman is Dagmar Turner, a 53-year old woman who has had a slow-growing tumor since 2013. Knowing how important the violin is to Dagmar, the King’s College Hospital surgeons woke her up in the middle of the operation in order to ensure they did not compromise parts of the brain necessary for playing the violin, such as parts that control precise hand movements and coordination.
By having her play, the doctors were in a better position to preserve function in the delicate areas of her brain that allow her to play, which they succeeded in doing.
While it’s rare for a patient to play their instrument during brain surgery, there have been other cases. For example, in July 2016 a team of scientists removed a tumor from a music teacher’s brain as he played the saxophone. What a sight.