Surgical Navigation Stimulator by Reality Mixed for Teaching and Practice in percutaneous spine procedures

Juarez, Felipe Miguel Camarillo, Mendez, Alejandro, Nino, Hector, Pérez, Jorge, Castañeda, Miguel Angel Padilla, Alatorre, Jessica, Soto, Gervith Reyes, Ovalle, Carlos Salvador, Ntalaja, Jeff et al (2024) Surgical Navigation Stimulator by Reality Mixed for Teaching and Practice in percutaneous spine procedures. Brain Sciences .

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Introduction: Spine Have, a mixed reality navigation simulator, has been developed to enhance the training of resident doctors in orthopedics, neurosurgery, and related fields like anesthesiology. This tool allows residents to practice intricate lumbar procedures virtually, including facet infiltration and transpedicular screw placement, thereby improving their learning curve and reducing patient risks. This simulator serves as both a teaching aid and a pre-surgical planning tool, potentially lowering operating time and fluoroscopy use.

Materials and Methods: The SpineNav simulator integrates 3D models from real patient CT scans with polyurethane and silicone mannequins, employing mixed reality to enhance lumbar spine procedure training. It provides realistic anatomical models for procedural practice, including facet infiltration and transpedicular screw placement. System validation involved comparing performance metrics like procedure time and accuracy between this new system and traditional fluoroscopy methods.

Results: The study validated the efficacy of the SpineNav Mixed Reality Simulator by comparing it with traditional fluoroscopy methods. Seven orthopedic and anesthesiology residents participated, performing three types of lumbar procedures: facet infiltration, transpedicular screw placement, and locating Kambin's triangle. The mixed reality system significantly reduced procedure time (p < 0.05) compared to traditional methods. Specifically, the mean procedure times for the SpineNav system were 15 minutes for facet infiltration, 25 minutes for transpedicular screw placement, and 20 minutes for locating Kambin's triangle. Accuracy metrics showed no significant difference in error rates (distance to target points) between the two methods, indicating comparable precision. Participants reported higher satisfaction with the SpineNav simulator, highlighting its ease of use, realism, and utility in enhancing spatial orientation and procedural understanding.

Conclusions: The SpineNav Mixed Reality Simulator marks a significant advancement in surgical education for spine procedures. By integrating 3D models, additive manufacturing, and mixed reality technology, it provides an effective training tool for orthopedics and neurosurgery residents. The study found that the simulator significantly reduced procedure times while maintaining accuracy comparable to traditional methods. Participants reported high satisfaction, noting its ease of use and realistic feedback. Overall, the SpineNav simulator shortens the learning curve and enhances training efficiency, offering a valuable resource for improving surgical skills and patient safety.

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