September 21, 2018

How 1 neurosurgeon helped save this violinist’s storied career

By Karl Oestreich


Roger Frisch, an accomplished violinist and member of the Minnesota Orchestra, developed a tremor in his hand that threatened his career. But thanks to the brilliant work of neurosurgeon Kendall Lee, Frisch has found a solution. His story is featured in Ken Burns’ latest documentary, “The Mayo Clinic.” Megyn Kelly is joined by Frisch, Lee and Burns for the story.

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Additional coverage

Context: Professional violinist Roger Frisch had a diagnosis of essential tremor. For two years he hid the quavering bow by not playing the soft parts of the music, but soon his career was in jeopardy. To save his music, neurosurgeons at Mayo Clinic implanted an electrical stimulator in his brain. The catch was, he had to be awake and playing the violin during the operation. You can read and view more about his story on Mayo Clinic News Network.  The Mayo Clinic: Faith, Hope and Science tells the story of a unique medical institution that has been called a “Medical Mecca,” the “Supreme Court of Medicine,” and the “place for hope where there is no hope.” The Mayo Clinic began in 1883 as an unlikely partnership between the Sisters of Saint Francis and a country doctor named William Worrall Mayo after a devastating tornado in rural Minnesota. Since then, it has grown into an organization that treats more than a million patients a year from all 50 states and 150 countries. Executive directed by Ken Burns, The Mayo Clinic is a two-hour documentary produced and directed by Erik Ewers and Christopher Loren Ewers, produced by Julie Coffman, and written by David Blistein. It will air on PBS September 25-26, 2018. You can read more about the film here.

Contacts:  Susan Barber Lindquist, Traci Klein


Tags: Dr. Kendall Lee, Minnesota Orchestra, neurosurgery, Roger Frisch, TODAY, Uncategorized

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