Imagine you are moving a couch with a friend. Your left is their right so you will probably make a few wrong turns before getting to the right place. Many physicians and operators face a similar challenge every day when they are using C-arm imaging for live image guidance during surgery or interventional procedures. But they are under a lot more pressure to get things right the first time.
That’s because there are many cases where the physician and operator are standing on different sides of the table. So when the physician asks the operator to move the C-arm to an imaging position, each has a different reference and that can lead to miscommunication. And that can result in positioning errors, potential safety hazards to patients, delays and frustration among team members and eventually to retakes and additional radiation exposure.1
Improving intraoperative imaging
There is a lot of progress being made today in achieving better image quality at efficient X-ray dose levels. At Philips too, we work on continually improving these aspects of your intraoperative imaging. But we are also focusing on improving another crucial aspect of surgical C-arm imaging, namely communication in the OR, because that has the potential to greatly improve workflow and more importantly, teamwork during procedures.
We realized if you could improve communication during intraoperative fluoroscopy it could benefit everyone involved. This thought process led us to design our ClearGuide for the Philips Veradius Unity intraoperative C-arm. ClearGuide provides a uniform set of reference numbers for the physician and operator to use during positioning. A simple solution that can have a huge impact.
The same reference numbers are shown on the clinical image and on the Flat Detector so everyone knows which direction is meant when positioning the C-arm.
Actually it’s always a problem because you tell the assistant to push the C-arm on the right side and they push it on the left side you put them. And so there’s always a problem of communication. It’s also due to the fact that the assistant is working on the opposite side of you. And I think the ClearGuide gives the option to clearly say what you want to have and to tell the direction of the C-arm.”
Kerry Vault, Program Director, Surgical Training Institute, Denver, CO, USA
Obviously some people will say, ‘go up.’ Some people will say, ‘go north.’ Some people will say, ‘cranial.’ So be able to say, ‘go towards the 3,’ ‘go towards the 9,’ I think is a neat feature.”
When users tested ClearGuide as they performed a simulated spine surgery, miscommunication about system positioning was cut by almost half. Using ClearGuide and color coding on the Veradius Unity intraoperative C-arm also led to 45% fewer movements in the wrong direction during positioning. Imagine what a difference that could make to the procedures you perform every day.
These are just a few of the many ways that Philips mobile C-arms are designed to improve your intraoperative imaging during surgical procedures. Watch the video below to find out more.
1 Williams THD, Syrett AG, Brammar TJ W.S.B. – A fluoroscopy C-arm communication strategy Int J Care Injured 2009; 40: 840-3.
2 Results obtained during user tests performed in November 2013 by Use-Lab GmbH, an independent company. The tests involved 30 USA based clinicians (15 physicians teamed up with 15 nurses or X-ray technicians), who performed simulated procedures in a simulated OR environment. None of them had worked with a Philips C-arm or with each other before.
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