AAOS: New Imaging Technology Could Benefit Spinal Navigation

Written by Laura Dyrda | April 26, 2011 | Print  |
Cone-beam CT technology can benefit spinal navigation because the X-ray emitter rotates around a fixed center and is able to take conventional images that can be reconstructed on any plane or three-dimensional images, according to an AAOS Now report by S. Raymond Golish, MD, and Paul A. Anderson, MD.

This isocentric C-arm technology can enhance spinal navigation because it acquires the cone-beam CT images intraoperatively, which makes the image registration process automatic since the patients are already positioned on the radiolucent table during the scan, according to the report.

The OR team is also able to control radiation exposure because the intraoperative imaging can be used at the start of a procedure or at the end of the day. Tomography is repeatable to verify registration and placement accuracy. There is currently a lack of controlled clinical trials to demonstrate the technology's safety and effectiveness. Some vendors offer optical or electromagnetic trackers that can be placed in the bone of the ileum or spinous processes to integrate intraoperative isocentric C-arm data.

There are several companies that manufacture this technology, and they can cost anywhere from $300,000-$350,000 or as much as $650,000-$800,000, depending on features, according to the report.

Read the AAOS Now report on isocentric C-arm technology for spine surgery.

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