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LVHN First in the Region to Obtain Mazor X Stealth(TM) Edition Robotic Guidance Platform


Lehigh Valley Health Network (LVHN) is the first health network in the region to obtain Mazor X Stealth™ Edition Robotic Guidance Platform. This robot is used for select back surgeries and is a game changer for patients and surgeons. So, what makes it so great? Here are the top five reasons.

1. Enhanced pre-surgery planning

Prior to the Mazor X Stealth Edition Robotic Guidance Platform, pre-surgery planning included a computed tomography (CT scan). The surgeon would review the image and plan for the surgery, but at times adjustments would have to be made during surgery, such as adjusting the size of a screw. With Mazor X Stealth Edition Robotic Guidance Platform, surgeons have a 3D view of a patient’s anatomy. This means there’s no question when it comes to planning and details like the size of a surgical screw. The technology enables your surgeon to customize the approach to match your specific needs. Surgeons also can rehearse the procedure before even performing it using the software.

2. Greater precision

Part of pre-surgery planning includes determining where incisions and surgical screws should be placed. 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.”

“During minimally invasive spine surgery the surgeon cannot visualize the spine, and the robot allows us to see it in three dimensions and precisely aligns everything,” says Jeffrey McConnell, MD, with LVPG Orthopedics and Sports Medicine. “The surgeon can make small incisions, and in three simple steps a screw can be placed in the vertebra. We no longer have to keep referring to a live X-ray image and make constant adjustments during the surgery.” This brings us to the next reason Mazor X Stealth Edition Robotic Guidance Platform is changing back surgery – increased visibility.

3. Increased visibility during surgery

Previously surgeons couldn't see the other screws that were placed during the procedure. They only had the original CT scan and X-rays taken during the procedure as a reference. “The robot allows surgeons to visualize where to make incisions,” Cervantes says. “Now we are able to see where instrumentations line up to each other during surgery.” Even during the procedure, surgeons can visualize a patient’s anatomy and surgical implementation in 3D.

4. Reduced surgery time

Mazor X Stealth Edition Robotic Guidance Platform reduces the time it takes to place spine instrumentation. “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.”

5. Less X-ray exposure

Prior to Mazor X Stealth Edition Robotic Guidance Platform, after a screw was inserted into the spine, the surgeon would take X-rays to view the position of the screw before moving on to the next step in the procedure. Now the surgery can be planned preoperatively on computer software, eliminating the need for multiple X-rays during the operation, which means less radiation exposure for patients and the care team.

Mazor X Stealth Edition Robotic Guidance Platform can be used in the treatment of many spine conditions, such as spinal instability (too much motion in spine) that produces pain or spinal abnormalities like scoliosis.

“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 or XR (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.”

Learn more about Lehigh Valley Institute for Surgical Excellence.

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