01 February 2012
Three surgeries performed with the help of the latest ultrasonic bone scalpel were part of the national workshop on 'excellence in spine' that concluded in the city on Sunday.
The two–day workshop was organised by the Oyster and Pearl Hospital, Department of Orthopaedics at the B J Medical College and Cure Academy – a group of spine surgeons.
"The bone scalpel is a novel ultrasonic bone cutting tool for rapid, safe and precise cuts. It is designed to provide clean cuts through bony structures with minimal loss of viable bone while sparing adjacent soft tissues. The tool not only reduces surgery time but is also safer than the traditionally practiced procedure as there is no chance of damage to the nerves or spinal chord," said spine surgeon Rajesh Parasnis.
Three people with various spinal problems were operated upon using the ultrasonic bone scalpel and balloon kythoplasty during the workshop.
Among them, a 64–year–old male patient was operated for lumbar canal stenosis – compression of spinal cord in the lumbar region. Parasnis used the bone scalpel tool for this surgery. "With this tool, we could manage to do the decompression much faster and safely without worrying about any chance of nerve damage which is usually the fear in traditional approaches," Parasnis said.
Another 65–year–old male patient was operated for cervical spondylosis – spinal cord and nerve root compression in the neck region.
"Once again we used the ultrasonic tool (bone scalpel) to do the decompression with ease and speed. Deeper pressure which was due to excessive bone growth was completely removed and nerves were made free of pressure. A piece of bone of exact size and shape was removed from patient's pelvis and put in the place of removed disc. Bone scalpel made this job simple and precise," Parasnis said.
In another case, kythoplasty technique was used to repair the two–month–old fracture of L1 vertebrae in an elderly patient. Kythoplasty is a type of minimally invasive back surgery used in cases of vertebral fracture. The purpose of a kyphoplasty is to stop the pain associated with the fracture, stabilise the vertebra and restore vertebral body height.
"In balloon kythoplasty, the height of the vertebrae is restored using a balloon tamp, which is sent to the vertebral body through a key hole from the back. This ensures that the height of collapsed bone (vertebrae) is restored and later strengthened with the help of bone cement. This immediately relieves the pain and patient is able to go back to his daily activities," said spine surgeon Abhay Nene of Hinduja Hospital, Mumbai.
On the second day of the workshop at the BJ Medical College and Sassoon Hospital, training was provided over cadavers, including hands–on cadaver workshop with C–arm, thoracic pedicle screw fixation, lumbar pedicle screw fixation, anterior cervical fusion, vertebroplasty among other specialised surgical training.
Course convener for the workshop was Girish Bartakke, convener and consultant spine surgeon at the B J Medical College and Sassoon Hospital. Other faculties consisted experts in spinal surgery attached to the medical institutions in Delhi, Gurgaon, Mumbai and Ahmedabad.