17 May Getting to know Robotic Spinal Surgery
Understanding Robotic Spinal Surgery
Whenever you bring up the phrase ‘robotic spinal surgery’ into a discussion about the human body, people get uneasy and start to ask questions.
Just as passengers demand that a human pilot be in control of the latest jetliner that can fly to a destination and land itself, patients simply don’t trust an unseeing, unfeeling robot to perform work that has traditionally been entrusted only to doctors and surgeons.
But doctors have been using complex diagnostic equipment and lasers in their practice for years. Robotics is simply another tool used by doctors to enable a higher degree of accuracy in spinal surgery.
How the System Works in Surgery
The robotics system used by surgeons at Vejthani Hospital, is called the Renaissance System.
This highly advanced surgical system maps out the patient’s spinal cord and the area that is damaged by using a computerised tomography scan (CT scan) to allow the surgeon to precisely plan out the procedure they plan to follow throughout the procedure.
Once they are in surgery, the system helps the surgeon guide the instruments to the precise place that was mapped out in the planning stages of the procedure.
During the operation, the surgeon is the one performing the procedure. The system acts as a guide providing information about which placements to follow and which steps to perform next.
In this way, the surgeon is still the one performing the procedure; they are simply performing steps that they have previously planned out in detail.
The surgeon is able to track the patient’s spinal nerve system in real time through the use of Intraoperative neuromonitoring.
This system provides constant feedback to the surgeon about any physiological changes to the patient during surgery that would affect patient safety and affect a positive outcome.
During the course of the spine surgery, screws must be placed in exact positions to achieve a positive outcome. This screw placement can be challenging for the surgeon to perform in exact detail.
The highly advanced O-ARM Navigation technology allows the surgeon to confirm correct screw placement in 3 dimensions, ensuring the safety of the patient and increasing the rate of correct screw placement to 99.7%.
Benefits of Robotic Spinal Surgery
The benefits of this new type of surgery are both profound and highly encouraging for patients suffering from chronic back pain due to a number of spinal issues.
The fact that accuracy is improved so much means that smaller incisions can be used. There is less operative bleeding, less risk of any medical complications and there is less exposure to radiation because the patient is spending a much shorter period of time undergoing the procedure, when the CT scan equipment has to be used.
All this adds up to shorter hospital stays and a much quicker recovery time for the patient.
This is a very new advancement in surgical technology. The first procedure was performed in August 2017 at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania.
But it’s proven to be such a success that surgeons all over the world immediately became interested in using it in their own practices.
The spinal column is one of the most sensitive areas in the body to perform any medical, invasive procedure.
By immediately improving the surgeon’s accuracy and precision during any procedure involving the spinal column, the robotics system has given new hope to millions of chronic back pain sufferers all over the world.
To learn more about robotic spinal surgery, contact the Spine Clinic at Vejthani Hospital to schedule a consultation.
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