Thursday, June 30, 2016

An Inside Look at Robotic Spine Surgery

robotic spine surgeonThe primary goal of spine surgery has always been to help the patient realize a successful and sustainable outcome with minimal complications. However, in the last fifteen to twenty years when technology in the medical field has taken off, robotic spine surgery has allowed for more specific goals and objectives with greater efficacy.

Some of the most goals behind robotic spine surgery include: allowing the patient to return to as normal a life as possible after surgery; to get them to that point as quickly as possible; and to minimize the amount of trauma done to the body during the surgery. If you think you might be a good candidate for robotic spine surgery, then read on to learn more.

Advantages of Robotic Spine Surgery

As a form of minimally invasive surgery (or MIS,) robotic spine surgery has many benefits. There is improved safety when using a robot guided by the CT or MRI scans of the patient. The robot knows where to, and where not to, go. This is true for both simple and complex surgeries so accuracy rates have risen dramatically when it comes to MIS spine surgeries, resulting in fewer instances of patients having to have their spinal surgery re-done within a few years.

Also, there is a minimized use of radiation, as the CT or MRI scans only have to be done once prior to the surgery, instead of having to have the patient under constant radiation in the operating room to see where the instruments are in the spine as most robotic devices are also equipped with cameras.

For more insight regarding the advantages of robotic spine surgery, see the video below of Mazor's Spine Assist technology:


Applications for Robotic Spinal Surgery

There are many types of spinal problems that robotic spinal surgery can be used for, including: degenerative spinal conditions, spine tumors, spinal deformities, and more. If there is a slipped disc or instability in an area of the back, the robotic spine surgeon may perform a fusion of two or more vertebrae. Before robotic spine surgery, this would include an incision to open up the back long enough to expose all vertebrae involved in the fusion.

Now, it can all be done with the robotic device using MIS. Because of this, the recovery time for this type of surgery has drastically reduced and patients are getting on with their lives faster than ever.

Robotic Spinal SurgeryA study done recently looked at over 600 surgeries where nearly half were considered MIS. Over 3,200 implants were placed during these surgeries and the overall accuracy rating was over 98%. The use of robotic spine surgery compared to open surgery on the spine has led one study to determine that implant accuracy has improved by at least 70%, the radiation that patients get with each surgery has been reduced by over 50% and the amount of time that each patient stays in the hospital after surgery has been reduced by over 25%.

There are many types and designs of robotic spine surgery devices and each one is proprietary to the manufacturer and the surgeon that uses each one will need training on how to use them. Chances are that a spine surgeon will have a preferred robotic spine surgery unit that he prefers to use so that he or she is comfortable with it every time in the operating room.


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