Holographic Imaging in Spine Surgery: Overview and Clinical Applications

Cary D. Alberstone, MD, Edward C. Benzel, MD, FACS, Frederick W. Rupp, MD


Medscape Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine eJourn. 1998;2(2) 

In This Article

Abstract & Introduction

Medical holography is an innovative, newly designed imaging technology that is characterized by three-dimensional imaging capabilities. The unique topographical information that is provided by holography is also amenable to viewer interaction, which allows the surgeon to plan and rehearse surgical procedures. Reproduction of holographic images in the published literature is best achieved with CD-ROM and other computer-aided technology. This review defines the fundamental principles of holography, and provides an introduction to its clinical applications in spine surgery.

Advances in holographic imaging technology prepare it for use in clinical practice.[1,2,3,4] Holography permits three-dimensional visualization of complex anatomic structures, the translucent images of which are amenable to viewer interaction. These features, which are complemented by the opportunity to view the image from a variety of angles, allow the surgeon to study the surgical anatomy and its topographical relationships in a more comprehensive manner than is possible with standard two-dimensional CT or MR imaging modalities. In addition, the surgeon is able to interact with the image representation, a feature that both improves understanding of anatomic relationships and provides a format for the planning and rehearsal of complex surgical interventions, allowing it to be used as an educational tool for residents.


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