What were your experiences with the head frame for Gamma Knife?

Posted by mountainseeker @mountainseeker, Sep 21, 2020

I was diagnosed with a Brain Tumor in March, they think it’s more likely a Meningioma but they aren’t ruling out Acoustic Neuroma. I saw lots of doctors, most who recommended Gamma Knife over surgery (which I was leaning towards anyhow). My Dad died of Brain Cancer, so I have a previous traumatic memory of him wearing the head frame on top of a phobia of needles and that type of thing. I decided I should see a therapist to help me with my anxiety over the head frame. It’s helped a lot, one thing she recommended is preparing myself by thinking about what it will feel like, play the day in my head. She told me to ask the doctors what it will be like, but unless the doctors have had to have a head frame they don’t know what it feels like, so am hoping some of you might share your experiences. I do better in general with procedures when I know what to expect – good or bad, so don’t hold back – better to prepare myself for the worst. What did it physically feel like once it was on? Was it heavy, did you feel off kilter or tip over because of the extra weight on your head? Did it limit head movements? Did it hurt? Does it obstruct your view? As the wearer what did it look like, what did you see? Did it smell?My procedure is next Monday; anything you can share that would help me to live it ahead of time in my mind, even if it was painful or traumatic, would help me tremendously.

Hello @boots77 and welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect. I understand you've had previous trauma causing you anxiety regarding the fitting and procedure and are looking for information on if this can be performed under general anesthesia.

I am not sure if you have had this type of procedure before or how familiar you are with it so have included a link to some information and a video you might find helpful.

-Mayo Clinic Minute: How Gamma Knife Surgery Treats Brain Tumors
Can I ask if you have let your doctor know of your concern and prior trauma and if this is your first experience with Gamma Knife?

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