Gamma Knife radiosurgery doesn't involve surgical incisions, so it's generally less risky than traditional neurosurgery. In traditional neurosurgery, there are potential complications associated with anesthesia, bleeding and infection.

Early complications or side effects are usually temporary. They may include:

  • Fatigue. Tiredness and fatigue may occur for the first few weeks after Gamma Knife radiosurgery.
  • Swelling. Swelling in the brain at or near the treatment site can cause a variety of symptoms depending on what areas of the brain are involved. If post-treatment swelling and symptoms do occur from the Gamma Knife treatment, these symptoms usually show up approximately six months after treatment rather than immediately after the procedure like with conventional surgery. In other words, they don't happen acutely or right away like with conventional surgery. Your doctor may prescribe anti-inflammatory medications (corticosteroid medications) to prevent such problems or to treat symptoms if they appear.
  • Scalp and hair problems. Your scalp may be red, irritated or sensitive at the four sites where the head frame was attached to your head during the treatment. But the head frame does not leave any permanent marks on the scalp. Rarely, some people temporarily lose a small amount of hair if the area being treated is right under the scalp.

Rarely, people may experience late side effects, such as other brain or neurological problems, months after Gamma Knife radiosurgery.

Sept. 14, 2016
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