Surgeon saves patient’s eyesight by removing brain tumor through nostrils

September 28, 2016, Ajman (UAE): A 34-year-old patient working as a crane operator has undergone a remarkable new procedure of surgery at Thumbay Hospital that allows the brain tumor to be removed through the nose.

Menhaj Khan first noticed something was wrong when his eyesight began to diminish, first the right eye, followed by the left eye. Although he had ignored his frequent bouts of headache for the last two years, the 34-year-old visited an ophthalmologist within two months of discovering the vision deterioration. He was told that there was nothing wrong with the eyes. He was later referred to Thumbay Hospital Dubai, where an MRI scan of the brain revealed that he had a large tumor on pituitary gland, pressing on the optic apparatus of brain and also hypothalamus, a very vital part of brain. This tumor was pressing on his optic nerves, causing him to slowly lose his sight.


Conventionally, such operations require surgeons to open the skull – a procedure known as a craniotomy. Moreover, affected portions of the brain are reached via major incisions in the side of the face or inside the mouth, leaving behind major scars of the surgery. However, to patient surprise, Dr. Ishwar Chandra Premsagar, consultant neurosurgeon at Thumbay Hospital (Dubai) said that they can remove the growth by sucking it out through his nose. An ear nose and throat (ENT) surgeon and an eye surgeon were consulted to plan the surgery and save further deterioration of vision while providing a chance for complete recovery. The patient, thus, underwent endoscopic trans-nasal trans-sphenoidal surgery, where the tumor was removed through the nose by endoscopic surgery without any cut or stitches on the skin. The father-of-five-kids has now made a full recovery, with improved vision, after the operation at Thumbay Hospital this September (2016).

Speaking about his battle with this brain tumor, he noticed loss of vision which was just within a time span of two months. He was turning practically blind and he couldn’t read anything. If the patient would have allowed the illness to remain untreated for much longer or not consulted the neurosurgeon at Thumbay Hospital, he would have gone blind. But, yes, looking back, there had been other symptoms like frequent headaches which he ignored, believing that the crane operating job is taxing and it’s nothing but getting tired.

The neurosurgeon, who conducted the surgery, Dr. Ishwar Chandra Premsagar, explained: “The endoscope provides a close-up view of the pituitary, allowing the surgeon to remove the entire tumor out in one go through the nostrils, causing no disfigurement or damage to the brain. On the other hand, the procedure ensures far less danger of brain damage or stroke, and the patient usually makes a quicker recovery. Although post-surgery, deterioration of vision stops, but one cannot guarantee complete recovery of vision. This patient was lucky as his vision improved, but it may not happen in all patients. Hence, it is extremely important that one should ensure early consultation, diagnosis and surgery to ensure high chances of recovery.”

Patient has noticed improvement in his vision as soon as he came out of the anesthesia on the same day.  By the end of the week, he could read too. The patient was highly thankful for the great job of the doctors for their proactive support and creative thinking and also Thumbay hospital for providing quality care. Physically, now, he is feeling better than before.

MOHAP: VB04723-06/12/2016

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