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LAKE ST. LOUIS, Mo. – SSM Health St. Joseph Hospital – Lake St. Louis is the first program in Missouri and St. Louis to adopt the 7D FLASH™ Surgical Navigation system.

They are one of only 60 programs around the world, including the Mayo Clinic, Stanford Hospital, and The Cleveland Clinic to purchase 7D FLASH™.

Dr. Timothy Graven, an orthopedic surgeon at the hospital has been using the system since the fall of 2019 very successfully. He is a spine surgery specialist and said the 7D system helps guide the surgical tools to the critical areas with better accuracy. “We aim the laser points and then take a picture,” says Dr. Graven.

The 7D FLASH™ system uses “Machine Vision” camera technology, similar to self-driving cars, while traditional navigation technology requires large amounts of radiation and costs two to three times as much.

“It’s different than some of the more traditional systems that use radiation, Xray,” Dr. Graven says. The 7D FLASH has reduced radiation exposure of the surgical team by up to 80 or 90 percent. “So it reduces the radiation, it reduces the time of surgery, improves the accuracy, reducing the time of surgery in less anesthetic potential complications, less blood loss and overall, is better for the patient.”

The 7D surgical system uses only visible light to take high resolution and highly detailed images of a patient’s spine in seconds. It gives real-time feedback of the images. The system streamlines surgical workflow as well as reduces operative time and radiation exposure. Dr. Graven said he has had incredible outcomes for his patients who need fusion surgery or other spine surgeries, but sees the possibility of using this system in the field of neurosurgery, lumbar and cervical surgeries, ENT (ear, nose, throat) surgeries and so much more. The hospital foundation funded the purchase.

To learn more about orthopedics, click here.

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