Sacred Heart Hospital has opened a second Smart OR, a specialized surgical suite that provides treatment for spine, trauma and stroke patients. Smart OR uses intra-operative MRI imaging for complex brain surgery.

The centerpiece to the hospital’s second Smart OR is BrainSUITE iCT, a digitally integrated operative room solution from BrainLAB that combines surgical navigation with intra-operative CT (iCT) scanning for instant verification of surgical outcomes.

The BrainSUITE iCT features a 40-slice iCT scanner from Siemens that takes 40 ‘slices’ or images of the body at once, resulting in crystal clear accuracy.

The iCT technology captures images of the body during surgery, while the patient is in the operating room. Because the iCT allows surgeons to see the progress of their surgery while they are performing surgery and verify the position of spinal implants, the need for re-operation is greatly reduced.

The technology is particularly useful for spinal surgeries/implants, cranial surgeries, stroke, trauma, orthopedics, and ear, nose and throat procedures.

The iCT Smart OR uses a floor-mounted track that moves the CT scanner over floor rails to the patient when surgeons need to perform a scan during the procedure. After the images are taken, the CT slides back to its original position, and the images from the intra-operative scan are automatically registered to navigational software.

Kamal Thapar, neurosurgeon at Marshfield Clinic and director of the Brain and Spine Institute at Sacred Heart Hospital, said: “The BrainSUITE iCT in our second Smart OR optimizes minimally-invasive spine surgery. During reconstructive spinal surgery, spinal implants can be passed through the skin via small ports, eliminating the need for large and painful incisions of traditional spinal surgery. Instead of a long incision, we’ll be able to navigate through centimeter incisions with millimeter accuracy. This translates into safer surgery and faster recovery.

“Prior to this technology, standard CT scans could only be done before and after surgery. Conducting an iCT scan during the surgical procedure allows the surgeon to navigate to the surgical target, verify that the surgical objective was achieved, and be certain that the implants are ideally positioned, all of which will reduce the need for additional procedures.”