1. When you arrive at Ruby Memorial Hospital, register on the first floor. You will be directed to 2 West, outpatient surgery.
  2. A nurse will take you to the preparation area where an intravenous line (IV) will be started.
  3. Head Frame Placement – Medication may be given to relax you. The doctor will place the head frame, which takes 10 to 15 minutes. The frame allows the doctor to plan the treatment and position your head for the actual treatment. The frame is aluminum and weighs less than two pounds. You will wear it all day.The frame will be attached to your head with four pins, two on your forehead and two on the back of your head. You will receive numbing medication at the pin sites.
  4. After the frame is placed, we will take MRI, CT, or other images of your head and brain that are needed for precise planning of your treatment.
  5. Treatment planning may take up to two hours. During this time you may rejoin your friends or family members, and you may be permitted to eat or drink. The head frame must remain attached, but you should not feel discomfort.
  6. Once your treatment plan is complete, you will be taken back to the Radiation Therapy suite and placed on the Gamma Knife couch. Your head, with frame attached, will be positioned precisely according to predetermined target coordinates. During your treatment, the medical team will be in another room. You will be watched through closed-circuit TV, and a microphone near your head will enable you to communicate with the team. The treatment usually lasts one to two hours.
  7. After your treatment, the head frame will be removed, and the pin sites will be cleaned and covered with band-aids. You will be monitored for approximately an hour before going home. You will receive specific instructions concerning follow-up care. With the Gamma Knife, serious side effects or complications can occur but are very rare. They will be explained to you prior to your procedure.