Dr. Kornelis Poelstra, director of The Robotic Spine Institute of Las Vegas, recently led the first-ever spinal surgery procedure using an xvision augmented reality headset paired with a surgical robot. 

Dr. Poelstra and his practice, in partnership with The Nevada Spine Clinic, completed the posterior lumbar fusion procedure on a patient using a combination of Medtronic’s Mazor X robotic platform integrated with Augmedics’ newly FDA-approved xvision.

Normally a fairly invasive and lengthy surgery lasting anywhere between six to seven hours, this particular patient’s procedure using the xvision headset in tandem with the Mazor X robot brought the surgery time down to just under two hours.  

This is because the xvision headset allows for the surgeon and his team to more precisely identify and pinpoint where to place the implants, in this case a proprietary superalloy MoRe (Molybdenum-Rhenium) lower-profile 4.5mm rod, paired with the MiRusEuropa Pedicle Screw System.  

Prior to the procedure, an orthopaedic and neurological spine surgeon uses the robotic platform to meticulously pre-plan the exact placement of the implant and screw system. 

Doing so makes the entire process minimally invasive and exponentially more efficient by reducing the time spent in the operating room as well as decreasing the soft-tissue damage compared to that of an open approach, speeding up recovery and healing afterwards.

Once that initial stage has been completed and the surgery is ready to get underway, Dr. Poelstra puts on his xvision headset, transporting him into a world of augmented reality, where he can follow his three-dimensional anatomical blueprint created through use of the software beforehand.  

As one of the main developers of the Mazor, offered by Medtronic, he uses this platform often for a more minimally invasive procedure, increased efficiency, advanced precision, and rapidly reduces time spent under anaesthesia in the operating room.  

With a PhD in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Groningen in The Netherlands, Dr. Poelstra is on the front-line of the design and development of spinal robotics that assist in spinal fusions and has performed more than 1,000 complex robotic procedures.

Via Med-TechNews.com

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