Iliac Screw Fixation Using Computer-Assisted Computer Tomographic Image Guidance: Technical Note

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Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Iliac screw fixation is a powerful tool used by spine surgeons to achieve fusion across the lumbosacral junction for a number of indications, including deformity, tumor, and pseudarthrosis. Complications associated with screw placement are related to blind trajectory selection and excessive soft tissue dissection.

OBJECTIVE:

To describe the technique of iliac screw fixation using computed tomographic (CT)-based image guidance.

METHODS:

Intraoperative registration and verification of anatomic landmarks are performed with the use of a preoperatively acquired CT of the lumbosacral spine. With the navigation probe, the ideal starting point for screw placement is selected while visualizing the intended trajectory and target on a computer screen. Once the starting point is selected and marked with a burr, a drill guide is docked within this point and the navigation probe re-inserted, confirming the trajectory. The probe is then removed and the high-speed drill reinserted within the drill guide. Drilling is performed to a depth measured on the computer screen and a screw is placed.

RESULTS:

Confirmation of accurate placement of iliac screws can be performed with standard radiographs.

CONCLUSION:

CT-guided navigation allows for 3-dimensional visualization of the pelvis and minimizes complications associated with soft-tissue dissection and breach of the ilium during screw placement.

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