Akron Children’s Opens $3.5M Operating Room for Spine Surgeries

AKRON, Ohio – Akron Children’s Hospital has opened a dedicated operating room for child, adolescent and young adult spine surgeries.

The nView s1 navigation system is the centerpiece of the $3.5 million operating room, giving pediatric orthopedic surgeons three-dimensional images of the spine in real time. Akron Children’s is the second children’s hospital in the country and the first in the Midwest to use the nView system.

“This is a brand-new technology that uses ultra-low-dose radiation to generate three-dimensional images and artificial intelligence to help us guide our implants into the correct location,” said Dr. Lorena Floccari, a pediatric orthopedic surgeon and director of spine research at Akron Children’s.

In addition to an estimated 80 percent reduction in the radiation exposure for patients, the system allows surgeons to navigate seeing a true representation of the anatomy.

“We can obtain the images to navigate off of them in one minute, compared with 20 minutes using our previous system, and they automatically orient in the correct plane of view,” Floccari said.

The nView labels every vertebra in the spine and, at the end of the surgery, gives the surgeons before and after views with real-time measurements so they can calibrate their correction and make final alignments.

Dr. Todd Ritzman, chair of the Department of Orthopedic Surgery, said the nView will be used as standard of care for idiopathic scoliosis cases, representing about 80 percent of the operating room volume.

“The efficiency and ease of this technology fits well into our workflow, and we are expecting even better outcomes,” Ritzman said. “More efficiencies in the OR translate into fewer infections, fewer transfusions, fewer complications and less cost to the health care system. It’s very exciting to have a facility 100 percent focused on spine surgery.”

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.