By Healthtrip Team Blog Published on - 28 June - 2022

Craniotomy: How Is the Surgery Performed?


‘Brain Surgery’, you may feel a little overwhelmed by just hearing the name itself. However, most brain surgeries are not as invasive as they sound, except for a few. A craniotomy is one such option, i.e., a little incisive as it requires an incision or cuts in your brain. This is mostly done to treat brain swelling more often. Here we have discussed the procedure and a few queries related to it in brief.

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Understanding the procedure—Craniotomy:

A craniectomy is a surgical procedure that removes a portion of your skull to relieve pressure in that area when your brain swells. A craniectomy is generally performed after a traumatic brain injury. It is also used to treat diseases that cause swelling or bleeding in the brain.

This operation is frequently used as an emergency life-saving intervention. Most often, the surgery is also called decompressive craniotomy surgery.

Also, Read - 20 Things You Can Expect After Brain Surgery

Why is this Craniotomy procedure necessary for you?

The following are the most prevalent reasons that require decompressive craniectomy:

Traumatic brain injury (TBI): A brain injury induced by physical force. It can happen after any incident that involves a hard hit to the head. Brain edema is frequently immediate after a TBI.

Stroke: Some strokes might induce swelling in the brain. The increased blood pressure caused by this edema is a risk factor for additional strokes.

When the brain expands and other pressure-reduction measures fail, doctors may consider a decompressive craniectomy.

Also, Read - 10 Best Brain Tumor Surgery Hospitals in India

How is the Craniotomy surgery performed?

A craniectomy is frequently performed as an emergency operation when the skull must be opened quickly to avoid complications from swelling, such as after a catastrophic head injury or stroke.

Your doctor will do a battery of tests to see if there is pressure or bleeding in your head before performing a craniectomy.

To do a craniectomy, your surgeon will:

  • Make a small incision on your scalp where the skull piece will be removed. The cut is typically made near the area of your skull that is swollen the most.
  • Remove any skin or tissue over the portion of the skull to be removed.
  • Create microscopic holes in your skull.
  • Use a tiny saw to make tiny cuts between the perforations until the entire chunk of the skull can be removed.
  • Store the piece of skull in a freezer or a small pouch on your body until it can be reinserted into your skull after you've healed.
  • Perform any operations that are required to treat the swelling or bleeding in your skull.
  • Once the swelling or bleeding has subsided, sew up the cut (incision) on your scalp.

Also, Read - Brain Microsurgery Saves 15 Year Old from Vision Loss at Artemis

How long does Craniotomy Surgery recovery take?

Patients undergoing a decompressive craniectomy are already in critical condition as a result of a brain injury or stroke. As a result, the length of their recuperation is mostly determined by the injuries that necessitated surgery in the first place.

The vast majority of people will spend time in the intensive care unit (ICU).

Some people will be unconscious for several days or weeks after surgery. Some may be in a coma. It is critical to protect the brain from further damage after a craniectomy. This normally necessitates the user to wear a custom-fitted helmet for several weeks to months.

A person may use a temporary brain implant to stabilize the brain and skull less frequently. This implant will be removed by a surgeon after recovery.

Also, Read - Brain Tumour Symptoms - 7 Warning Signs You Should Know

How can we help with the treatment?

If you are in search of treatment for brain swelling in India, we will serve as your guide throughout your medical treatment and will be physically present with you even before it begins. The following will be provided to you:

  • Opinions of expert physicians and surgeons
  • Transparent communication
  • Coordinated care
  • Prior appointment with specialists
  • Assistance with hospital formalities
  • 24*7 availability
  • Arrangements for travel
  • Assistance for accommodation and healthy recovery
  • Assistance in emergencies

Our team is dedicated to offering the highest quality health trip and care to our patients. We have a team of highly qualified doctors and devoted health professionals that will be by your side from the beginning of your journey.


A craniotomy is a surgical procedure in which a part of the skull is temporarily removed to access the brain for various medical purposes.
During a craniotomy, the surgeon makes an incision in the scalp, removes a section of the skull, and accesses the brain for treatment or examination.
Craniotomy can be done to remove brain tumors, treat brain injuries, manage bleeding, relieve pressure, or address neurological conditions.
Before surgery, medical imaging is conducted, and the patient's medical history is reviewed. Anesthesia is administered to keep the patient unconscious and pain-free during the procedure.
The surgeon makes an incision, uses specialized tools to remove a section of the skull (bone flap), accesses the brain, performs the necessary treatment, and then reattaches the bone flap.
Craniotomy is generally considered safe, but like any surgery, it carries risks such as infection, bleeding, and complications related to brain function.
After surgery, the patient is monitored in the intensive care unit, and then moved to a regular hospital room. Recovery time varies based on the individual and the procedure performed.
Complications can include infection, bleeding, blood clots, swelling, and changes in brain function.
Patients should follow pre-operative instructions, discuss medications with their doctor, and arrange for post-operative care and support.