Musician plays violin during brain surgery in London


Published: 2020-02-19 15:48

Last Updated: 2022-08-16 10:48

Musician plays violin during brain surgery in London
Musician plays violin during brain surgery in London

A woman has undergone brain surgery while playing the violin to ensure surgeons did not damage the part which controls the fine movement of her hands.

Dagmar Turner,53, was worried she may lose her music skills so she suggested to play the violin during the operation.

Professor Keyoumars Ashkan, a consultant neurosurgeon at the King’s College hospital in London, came up with the plan to reduce the risk.

Surgeons mapped her brain, opened the skull and then got her to play the violin as the tumor was removed.

Footage shows Turner picking up the instrument during the surgery and playing scales with her eyes shut.

"This was the first time I've had a patient play an instrument," Professor Ashkan said.

"We managed to remove over 90% of the tumor, including all the areas suspicious of aggressive activity, while retaining full function in her left hand."

Ms. Turner thanked the surgeons afterward for preserving her 40-year love for the instrument.

"The violin is my passion. I've been playing since I was 10 years old," she said.

"The thought of losing my ability to play was heartbreaking."

Turner was diagnosed in 2013 with a brain tumor after suffering a seizure during a symphony.