When life gets busy it can feel as though there just aren’t enough hours in the day to get everything done. For those fortunate enough to carry the gift, multitasking is one way to shave a few minutes off daily chores, and undoubtedly the Multitasker of the Year award has to go to an Italian woman who managed to knock out 90 stuffed olives while undergoing a spot of brain surgery.
The remarkable feat took place in under an hour, meaning that the patient wasn’t just preparing a veritable snacking feast with an open skull but she was absolutely gassing it, too. The 60-year-old culinary wizard was tasked with preparing the traditional Italian snack, olive all'ascolana, by surgeons who claimed they wanted to monitor her motor function but whom I suspect saw an opportunity to procure some post-match sustenance.
This isn’t the first time a patient has been asked to do something a little strange while undergoing brain surgery. Back in February, a UK woman serenaded her operating team as she played the violin during an awake craniotomy. It might sound absurd but carrying out physical tasks that are familiar to the patient benefits the surgical team as they work on the temporal lobe. Our ability to speak and perform complex movements is determined by this area of the brain, so with the help of a psychologist, the surgeons can monitor a patient’s function by observing their ability to speak or carry out practical tasks while they work.
Taking place at the Neurosurgery Department at the Azienda Ospedali Riuniti in Ancona, central Italy, the complete surgery took 2.5 hours involving a team of 11 medical staff including surgeons, a psychologist, and nurses. The head of Neurosurgery Dr Roberto Trigiani reported the operation to be a success, reports Italian press agency Ansa. Having previously carried out 60 operations of this kind, Trigiani is accustomed to seeing his patients carrying out tasks during brain surgery but this is the first time olive all'ascolana has made an appearance in his operating theatre.
[H/T: Interesting Engineering]