X-ray system gets out of the way during surgery

Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Production Systems and Design Technology (Berlin, Germany) are developing a system that will allow surgeons to view 3-D x-ray images of a patient during an operation.

Nov 1st, 2011
Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Production Systems and Design Technology (IPK) and Ziehm Imaging are constructing a prototype of the Orbit maneuverable x-ray system that will allow clinicians to image patients without interrupting surgical procedures
Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Production Systems and Design Technology (IPK) and Ziehm Imaging are constructing a prototype of the Orbit maneuverable x-ray system that will allow clinicians to image patients without interrupting surgical procedures

Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Production Systems and Design Technology (IPK; Berlin, Germany) are developing a system that will allow surgeons to view 3-D x-ray images of a patient during an operation.

Thanks to its novel design, the new “Orbit” system will obviate the need for clinicians to interrupt a surgical operation each time an x-ray needs to be taken, a common procedure when using traditional x-ray systems.

The Orbit system itself uses a maneuverable x-ray source fitted to an articulated bracket that follows a circular path above the operating table. A digital flat-panel detector recessed into the operating table then captures the x-ray images of a patient, while a monitor -- either mobile or wall-mounted -- can be used to display them.

Researchers at the Fraunhofer IPK and Ziehm Imaging are currently constructing a prototype of the system that they plan to test in 2012. It should be ready for market in three to five years’ time.

-- By Dave Wilson, Senior Editor, Vision Systems Design

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