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In the News: New Neurosurgery Equipment at St. Bernards

By: kila.owens ,

Walking with her husband used to be a challenge for Michelle Brosig.

For years she had problems because of a joint in her spine, “the S.I. joint was having too much movement and it was keeping my nerves irritated. So, it was causing me a lot of pain and discomfort,” said Brosig.

A little over a month ago, Brosig was able to have a surgery to help end her pain by placing two screws in her S.I. joint.

Thanks to new technology at St. Bernards Healthcare it was easier and safer than ever.

That new machine is called the O-arm.

“What we’re able to do now with the O-arm is to get a intraoperative C-T scan and then that information is fed into another piece of technology called the stealth system. The computer then knows where the instruments are inside the patient's body”, said neurosurgeon Dr. Eric Akin.

This is important because it allows the neurosurgeons to use the technology to navigate the patient's body to be more precise when placing the screws.

“Before we even begin operating on the patient, we can plan it all out figure out the best place. The system will help us put it where it would go best. That’s something we couldn’t do 10 years ago”, said Akin.

Neurosurgeon doctor Alice Cherqui says a more precise placement, has a chain reaction of benefits for patients, “This decreases complication rates, it decreases rates of return to the O.R. It can decrease blood loss and so all of that leads to safer and better outcomes for the patients”.

Brosig can already see the difference the surgery has made after only a few weeks.

“I can actually stretch, I couldn’t do that before. Put my shoes on, just little things.  Stand in the shower long enough to wash your hair. It makes a huge difference” said Brosig.

Learn more by watching this video from Northeast Arkansas News! And, check out the video below to hear Dr. Akin and Dr. Cherqui explain the O-arm technology further.