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State-of-the-art tech means better, safer spine surgeries

Dameron is the first hospital in California to offer a state-of-the-art spine surgery imaging system.

Last December, our Surgery Department became one of the first in the country to begin using the TrackX instrument-tracking technology for spine procedures.

Stockton Orthopedic Spine Surgeon Bayan Aghdasi, MD, performed the first spine surgery procedure using this new technology, which provides virtual live fluoroscopy and real-time visualization of the instrument while reducing radiation exposure and decreasing operating time.

Minimally invasive spine surgery typically requires the use of multiple X-ray images to allow the surgeon to accurately visualize the intricate anatomy they are operating on. That process typically generates significant levels of radiation exposure. It also takes a significant amount of time for surgeons to pause their work, find the X-ray to establish their reference points, and resume the procedure.

The TrackX technology provides a solution by using the fluoroscope's X-ray images as reference images to track, in real-time, the surgeon's instruments and implants relative to the patient's anatomy. In essence, TrackX simulates live fluoroscopy (continuous X-ray imaging) without the use of additional X-rays —substantially reducing radiation exposure.

TrackX's core technology works similarly to how a virtual reality gaming device works — by using a motion sensor to track the real-time movement of the handheld controller relative to the player and displaying it on the game view screen. With the use of the TrackX SnapsTM software and X-ray C-arm cap and collar, surgical instruments can now be tracked in real time with increased surgical efficiency and accuracy. This technology reduces total radiation exposure by 91%, time to find the desired X-ray by more than 30% and the number of X-rays taken by 74.8%.

TrackX image comparison: The darker image, at left, is for reference, and the shadow image of the tool is the representation of the placement as it moves in real time.

The darker image, at left, is for reference, and the shadow image of the tool is the representation of the placement as it moves in real time.

"The TrackX technology provides the most advanced, low-dose spinal navigation available," says Dr. Aghdasi. "The system enables me to visualize the spine anatomy in real time and allows for more accurate adjustments as the spine shifts into proper alignment during the procedure. I'm not only able to perform my surgeries faster and with greater precision, but the reduced radiation exposure due to not having to take as many X-rays is safer for my patients, myself and my OR team."

"Dameron Hospital is proud to be among the first hospitals in the country to utilize the TrackX instrument-tracking technology," says Tim Karagounis, Dameron Hospital operations executive. "This new technology will allow surgeons to repair spinal deformities and degenerative conditions with a higher degree of safety. We're delighted to be able to bring this to our patients, our surgeons and our OR team."

TrackX instrument-tracking technology

  • Reduces total radiation exposure by 91%.
  • Reduces the time to find the desired X-ray by more than 30%.
  • Reduces the number of X-rays taken by 74.8%.

Categories: Spine surgery

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