Computer-assisted spine surgery (CASS) is a discipline that uses novel computer-based technologies, including stereotaxy, navigated surgery and robotics.
Navigation assisted spine surgery is a group of technologies, which allow the surgeon to access real-time, three dimensional and virtual images of the spine in relation to the surgical instruments intraoperatively. This is a combination of image acquisition and processing that is followed by intraoperative navigation.
The primary goal of navigation is to optimize the surgical intervention by providing the surgeon with advanced visualization of the operative field and to see the exact position of the handheld instrument in relation to the bony anatomy. The overall benefits include accurate and safe instrumentation, minimal radiation exposure to the surgical team, reduction of surgeon fatigue and surgical duration.
Spine Navigation was initially used to improve the accuracy of pedicle screw placement. However, over the years, its use has extended into minimally invasive surgical techniques, cervical spine surgery, revision surgery and spine tumor surgery.
Following are the Benefits of Spinal Navigation –
- Spinal navigation improves the accuracy of spinal instrumentation, thereby reducing neurovascular complications and implant failures.
- Navigated surgery reduces surgical duration and radiation exposure to the operating room personnel.
- It allows intraoperative assessment of tumour margins, which helps the surgeon to obtain adequate surgical resection of tumours.
- In revision surgery and severe complex deformities, navigation allows the surgeon to instrument the pedicles with altered morphology and distorted anatomy.
- Intraoperative navigation is also useful to assess the accuracy of instrumentation and also adequacy of decompression following surgery.