'The least invasive surgery possible': Spine robot advances spine care at Lehigh Valley


Allentown, Pa.-based Lehigh Valley Health Network is the first health system in that region to acquire the Mazor X robot, which is changing how surgeons operate on spine patients.

Designed by Medtronic, Mazor X combines preoperative planning tools and analytics with intraoperative guidance to assist surgeons precisely place pedicle screws.

"In a typical lumbar surgery there is an up and down, side to side motion of the surgeon's hand that allows for margin of error," neurosurgeon Luis Cervantes, MD, said in a May 18 news release. "The robot eliminates any motion or variation that could occur by human hand."

"It allows us to perform the least invasive surgery possible," said Jeffrey McConnell, MD. "This minimizes pain and allows patients to get back to normal life sooner."

Medtronic recently upgraded the robot by integrating its Midas Rex high-speed drills, which are intended to improve precision, disc-prep access and navigation, according to the company.

The robot is the latest technology available to surgeons at Lehigh Valley, which also features an extended reality system for brain surgery and IRIS 3D imaging for robotic kidney procedures. 

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