GPS for doctors: Unity Hospital neurosurgeons turn to new, life-saving system

August 02, 2019 05:57 PM

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) -- A new neurosurgery navigation system has made its arrival in New York state for the first time, and it's being used right here in Rochester.

Earlier this year, Unity Hospital became the first hospital in the state to use a radiation-free navigation system known as the 7D Surgical System.


The technology, commonly seen in self-driving cars, uses four flash registration cameras to help surgeons pinpoint their exact spot to use surgical tools, all in real time. By not using radiation, like other systems do, surgeons say it provides a safer environment for patients and surgeons.

"It's just taking what was already an excellent spinal care service, and bringing it to that next level." said Dr. Anthony Petraglia, neurosurgeon 

Petraglia recently used the technology when he operated on Rochester native, Bob Brown, last month. Brown, a Vietnam veteran, had a significant fal  and fractured the C1 vertebrae in his neck.

"Myself, I would say, if they say it's needed, go do it." Brown said. 

After Brown's surgery, he was able to leave the hospital within 24 hours. Petraglia says, while using the machine does help speed up surgery and recovery time, results vary among patients.

To learn more about the system, you can click here.


Andrew Hyman

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