New Technology Provides Integrated Image Guidance
Michael Handler, MD, Chair, Pediatric Neurosurgery, Children's Hospital Colorado
Associate Professor, University of Colorado Denver School of Medicine
Children’s pediatric neurosurgery operating room has been upgraded with the full BrainLAB BrainSUITE® system for integrated image guidance. This incorporates the dedicated frameless stereotactic biopsy system, integration of intraoperative ultrasound with the image guidance, and the most advanced planning software. The new technology allows for the fullest utilization of the most advanced intraoperative technology, of particular importance in brain tumor and epilepsy surgery. The room incorporates VectorVision® sky, a powerful Image-Guided Surgery (IGS) system with advanced navigation software from BrainLAB, providing surgeons with more precise access to brain tumors, vascular abnormalities, and other intra-cranial targets, for less-invasive procedures.
VectorVision® sky enables neurosurgeons to visualize and track instrument positioning relative to pre-operative diagnostic images during surgery. The diagnostic images allow Children's Hospital Colorado neurosurgeons to view the critical functional areas and pathways within the brain, providing for increased precision and safety, which may help lower re-operation and complication rates, providing patients with the best possible surgical care.
VectorVision® sky displays real-time, 3D images of the patient’s pre-operative Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) or Computed Tomography (CT) scan data on a touch-screen monitor and is equipped with two infrared cameras that track the patient’s exact positioning on the operating table. VectorVision® sky is designed with an emphasis on fast workflow and intuitive user interface—both of which are vital during a complex neurosurgical procedure and lead to the best possible outcome for the patient.
Live Video Images from the Operating Microscope
Children's Hospital Colorado operating room is equipped with two large wall mounted High Definition screens, to display the BrainLAB images, or live video images from the operating microscope or endoscopes, both very important to the flow of operations and for teaching.
Harnessing the power of the digital age, BrainSUITE® NET connects the OR directly to the hospital’s flow of patient information. By enabling surgeons to quickly access crucial patient data directly from the OR, BrainSUITE® NET helps to enhance decision-making and save valuable time, while enabling OR integration of multiple complex surgical devices. BrainSUITE® NET gives OR staff instant access to PACS and other data sources, as well as intra-operative images. Its advanced 3D and image fusion capabilities enable surgeons to enrich this data, ensuring that treatment decisions are based on the latest and most complete information available.
The BrainLAB i-plan® treatment planning programs will be available to surgeons from any computer with internet access, well in advance of an operation, allowing longer and more detailed planning than has been possible in the past. Automatic image fusion software will allow incorporation of multiple imaging studies into an integrated surgical plan, arrived at in advance, and brought to the operating room seamlessly. The system works with an unprecedented speed, consistency and accuracy.
The BrainLAB Digital Lightbox® on the neurosurgical patient care unit is an interactive platform incorporating the benefits of traditional x-ray viewers and modern workstations, allowing access to the hospital imaging system through a large, touch screen display. The ease of presenting the imaging data facilitates communication among the surgical team, and with patients and families.
The BrainLAB VarioGuide® is an integrated system to allow precise biopsies with the frameless stereotactic system. The software systematically ensures the accuracy of the system in the operating room, leading to unprecedented facility for the process.
The VectorVision IGSonic® system allows real-time intraoperative ultrasound images to be overlaid onto the original CT or MR images, to allow the Children’s surgeon to compensate for the common problem of movement of the brain during operations that can sometimes limit the efficacy of image guidance systems as an operation proceeds. This provides increased intraoperative information and control of the process for the surgeon.
This truly remarkable upgrade of our operating room places us squarely in the forefront of providing the best neurosurgical care for the children of the region.