The O-arm has finally arrived !

In spinal column operations it is sometimes necessary to place screws. This can be the case with fractures, but also when the vertebrae have insufficient stability. In this case, the vertebrae must be 'fixed'. This is called 'arthrodesis' or 'spondylodesis'.

This is done using X-rays to establish where exactly the screw must be placed.

However, the use of X-ray examination in one or two directions is not always accurate, particularly when the spinal column is deformed. Yet, placing a screw incorrectly may result in nerve damage and serious injuries (see also the picture below). Obviously, this is a complication that must be avoided.

To do so, a device has been designed that makes three-dimensional images of the vertebrae during the operation: the O-arm.

The device is installed around the patient and images are made as in a CT scan.

What's more, it is now possible to enter the screws into the vertebra in a computer-controlled manner with a very high degree of precision.

You can watch this in the following film:

This image shows how the screw is screwed into the vertebra under permanent image control.

At the end of the operation, new images are made to make absolutely sure that the screws are perfectly in position.

This way, this operation is made once more a lot safer !!!

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