A craniotomy is a surgical procedure to remove a section of bone (bone flap) from the skull to provide access to the brain. The bone flap is then replaced at the end of the procedure.

  • Diagnosing or removing brain tumors.
  • Clipping or repairing an aneurysm.
  • Removing blood or blood clots from a leaking blood vessel under the skull.
  • Removing an arteriovenous malformation (AVM).
  • Draining a brain abscess.
  • Repairing a tear in the membrane lining the brain.
  • Relieving intracranial pressure by removing damaged or swollen areas of the brain caused by traumatic injury or stroke.
  • Treating epilepsy.

Alternative treatments depend on the objective of the procedure. In the case of small tumors, aneurysm, or small abnormal blood vessels, a gamma knife or stereotactic surgery may be used.

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