Dr. Kim introduces himself and shares how the O-arm® imaging system has improved the outcome of spinal surgery.
Hi, I am Dr. Kim. I am a spine specialist at Alvarado Hospital in the Advanced Spine Institute. I am also the Executive Director of the Society for Minimal Invasive Spine Surgery, which is headquartered at Alvarado Hospital.
The three-dimensional imaging system allows me to use minimally invasive surgical techniques in a safe and effective manner, the idea being that we need to know where the various vital structures are in and around the spine and typically during traditional open surgery we’ll have a wide exposure so that we can see directly what’s around us.
When we do minimally invasive surgery we try to minimize the incision and the, what we call the surgical corridor, to precisely the area that we need to operate on, which usually is the size of a dime or even smaller.
So theoretically, we should only have to be able to open up that specific area. The problem is that when we do that it’s very easy to get lost within the anatomy because a millimeter or two nearby could be a very important structure such as a nerve.
So the O-arm® allows me to see indirectly what I normally would see during traditional open surgery by exposing the entire wound, and this is probably most similar to having a navigation system in your car that allows you to know exactly where you are in three-dimensional space without having to look over cars and around trees and around buildings, and this technology allows me to make the incision very precisely.
It allows me to open up only the part of the body that I need to operate on and to do that in a safe way, and one simple example is even before I make my skin incision I will take the three-dimensional navigation probe and put it on the skin and identify exactly where the most optimum entry point is and that way I don’t have to stretch the skin one way or the other or I don’t have to make the incision excessively long.
About Dr. Choll Kim, M.D.:
Dr. Choll Kim graduated cum laude from Harvard Medical School and completed his fellowship training in complex spine surgery at the Mayo Clinic. He is board certified by American Board of Orthopaedic Surgeons.
Dr. Kim is a nationally known expert in the modern field of computer-assisted minimally invasive spine surgery. He has trained specialists throughout the country on the safe and effective application of state-of-the-art techniques using image guidance and navigation technologies.