Surgeon in Canada operates on 8-year-old boy's teddy bear

Dr Daniel McNeely diagnosed the cuddly bear with a tear in the underarm and gave it an “oxygen mask” for the procedure.
Dr Daniel McNeely diagnosed the cuddly bear with a tear in the underarm and gave it an “oxygen mask” for the procedure.PHOTO: TWITTER/PDMCNEELY

A Canadian surgeon became the talk of the Internet after he performed an operation without the use of anaesthetic - on his patient's ripped teddy bear.

Dr Daniel McNeely, a neurosurgeon at IWK Health Centre in Halifax, Nova Scotia, posted photos of the "daring" procedure on Twitter on Sunday (Sept 30).

The heart-warming post has since garnered more than 11,000 retweets and over 26,000 likes.

Eight-year-old Jackson Mckie was heading into surgery when he asked Dr McNeely if he could also fix his favourite stuffed toy, Little Baby, which he had brought along for the operation.

Jackson has hydrocephalus - a condition which involves excessive accumulation of fluid in the brain - and was suffering from bad headaches.

Dr McNeely has been one of Jackson's primary neurosurgeons since birth, and was repairing a shunt that helps drain fluid from the brain to release pressure.

Said Dr McNeely in the only post on his Twitter page: "How could I say no?"

He diagnosed Little Baby with a tear in the underarm and gave it an "oxygen mask" for the procedure.

Jackson's father, Mr Rick McKie, said the bear was given to the family before their son was born.

When Jackson woke up from his operation, he was over the moon, said Mr McKie.

"He was so proud. He had Little Baby laying up in the hospital bed with him and everything," Mr McKie told Canada's CBC News.

In interviews with local media after his tweet went viral, Dr McNeely said: "I thought if there was something I could do to help make him feel better, it seemed like a simple gesture and I was only too happy to oblige."

He added that the act was one example of how healthcare providers can comfort their patients in non-medical ways.

Both patients are recovering after the successful procedures.