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LVHN pioneers robotic guidance spine surgery

Lehigh Valley Health Network is first in the region to perform surgery using the Mazor X Stealth Edition Robotic Guidance Platform.

This technology allows surgeons to fully plan a procedure before a patient even arrives to the operating room.

During the procedure, the surgeon guides the robot to execute the prepared plan with precision.

“In a typical lumbar surgery there is an up and down, side to side motion of the surgeon’s hand that allows for margin of error,” says Luis Cervantes, MD, with LVPG Neurosurgery. “The robot eliminates any motion or variation that could occur by human hand.”

Minimally invasive procedures like the typical spinal fusion require smaller incisions, which pose a challenge to surgeons due to the limited view of the patient’s anatomy.

The Mazor X Stealth Edition Robotic Guidance Platform helps to overcome this challenge with a 3D comprehensive surgical plan and analytics that give the surgeon comprehensive information and visualization before the surgery starts. Consequently, the Platform supports surgeons’ commitment to operate with precision.

“During minimally invasive surgery the surgeon does not directly visualize the spine and the robot allows us to see in three dimensions and precisely align everything,” says Jeffrey McConnell, MD, with LVPG Orthopedics and Sports Medicine. “The surgeon can make smaller incisions and in three simple steps, the screw is in place.”

Minimally invasive surgery has been a major focus in recent years, often providing the most advanced technologies along with high quality care for patients.

“It allows us to perform the least invasive surgery possible,” McConnell says. “This minimizes pain and allows patients to get back to normal life sooner.”

“LVHN’s continued investment to acquire the latest surgical technologies shows our commitment to offer patients the best care possible,” says Michael Pasquale, MD, Physician in Chief, Lehigh Valley Institute for Surgical Excellence. LVHN was among the first of three institutions in the world to acquire IRIS, a 3D technology used during robotic surgery for imaging of a patient’s anatomy for partial nephrectomies (kidney surgery to remove diseased tissue). LVHN also is first in the state to offer extended reality (the combination of virtual reality, augmented reality and mixed reality) for brain surgery.

“LVHN is known for excellence in surgical care and our addition of the Mazor X Stealth Edition Robotic Guidance Platform is an example of why people have come to know us for leading-edge technology.”