Arkansas surgeon used FaceTime to calm patient during brain operation

A surgeon at Little Rock, Ark.-based University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences used FaceTime during a scheduled brain operation, marking the first time the iPhone chat app has been used during such a procedure in the state, according to NBC-affiliate news website

Indranil Chakraborty, MD, a neuroanesthesiologist at the teaching hospital, pitched the idea to a patient who had to be awake for a craniotomy during surgery.

Dr. Chakraborty used Apple's video-chat app to calm the patient while surgeons attempted to remove a tumor the size of an orange that pressed on his brain this summer.

"We thought about why not let the patient at particular times talk to his family or her family waiting outside. That would give the patient a sense of reassurance and relaxation," Dr. Chakraborty told

Dr. Chakraborty said the key to an awake craniotomy is to keep the patient calm. FaceTime did that for the patient, who video-chatted with his wife.

Three months after the surgery, the patient is fully functional, reports.

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