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AR Surgical System Enables See-Through Spine Surgery

By HospiMedica International staff writers
Posted on 26 Apr 2018
Augmedics (Yoqneam, Israel), a developer of an augmented-reality (AR) surgical navigation system, has successfully completed its second cadaver study using its xvision-spine system (XVS) with surgeons from Johns Hopkins Hospital, as well as two surgeons from hospitals in Israel. During the study, the surgeons placed 120 pedicle screws in five separate cadavers with a screw placement accuracy of 96.7% when employing the combined Heary-Gertzbein grading scheme.

Augmedics’ XVS is an AR surgical navigation system designed to give surgeons “X-ray vision” during complex procedures. XVS allows surgeons to see and navigate inside a patient’s body through skin and tissue, for easier, faster and safer surgeries. The XVS system is comprised of a transparent near-eye-display headset and has all the elements of a traditional navigation system. It accurately determines the position of surgical tools in real-time and superimposes them on the patient's CT data. The navigation data is then projected onto the surgeons' retina using the transparent near-eye-display headset, allowing surgeons to simultaneously look at their patient and see the navigation data without averting their eyes to a remote screen.

Image: The XVS allows surgeons to see and navigate inside a patient’s body through skin and tissue, for easier, faster and safer surgeries (Photo courtesy of Augmedics).
Image: The XVS allows surgeons to see and navigate inside a patient’s body through skin and tissue, for easier, faster and safer surgeries (Photo courtesy of Augmedics).

XVS has the potential to be used in various procedures, with its first intended use in minimally invasive or open spine surgeries. The technology was designed to save time during surgery, increase precision in MISS and open spine surgeries, reduce radiation exposure, and reduce the number of unnecessary repeat operations and hospitalizations.

Dr. Timothy Witham, professor of neurological surgery and orthopedic surgery at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, said, “Typically what we have to do during minimally-invasive spine surgery is we have to look away from where we’re working. But XVS has all the image-guided information directly in front of you in the goggles you’re wearing, while you’re placing the instrumentation.

“With XVS, I can actually see the details of the three-dimensional anatomy through the patient,” added Dr. Daniel Sciubba, professor of neurological surgery, oncology and orthopedic surgery at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. “With its optics on-lay, it is lightweight, easy to use, and translucent, so you can see through the actual image.”

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