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Violinist plays during surgery on her brain

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This allowed the doctors to identify precisely the parts of the lobe necessary for controlling the left hand. Stock image

This allowed the doctors to identify precisely the parts of the lobe necessary for controlling the left hand. Stock image

This allowed the doctors to identify precisely the parts of the lobe necessary for controlling the left hand. Stock image

A violinist had brain surgery while playing her instrument in order to show doctors which part of the organ they should avoid damaging.

Dagmar Turner played while surgeons at King's College Hospital, London, carefully removed a tumour on the right frontal lobe.

The Isle of Wight Symphony Orchestra member (53) had been terrified the procedure would damage the area that controls the fine movement of the left hand.

So she suggested that lead surgeon Prof Keyoumars Ashkan, himself an accomplished pianist, should wake her from a general anaesthetic to play after the team had conducted a craniotomy, opening the skull, and spent two hours meticulously mapping her brain.

This allowed the doctors to identify precisely the parts of the lobe necessary for controlling the left hand.

The operation was a success, and three days after the procedure Ms Turner returned home to her husband and son, and was back to regular playing within two and a half weeks. (© Daily Telegraph, London)

Telegraph.co.uk