BASS 2019: Computer navigation for pedicle screw placements is ‘a justifiable expense’

Robert Lee (London, UK) tells Spinal News International why he prefers using computer navigation to free-hand technique in pedicle screw placement procedures. Lee explains that computer navigation can reduce radiation exposure to surgeons and improve the accuracy and precision of pedicle screw placement.

Lee highlights his own use of navigation systems. He also talks about the biggest barrier to adoption, cost, which is particularly important in a “cash-strapped NHS environment”.

Despite this, Lee says that the cost of computer navigation systems is justified as they can actually save money by reducing length of stay and poor outcomes for patients.

Robert Lee was speaking to Spinal News International at the BASS 2019 conference in Brighton.

Lee, Robert

Mr Lee studied medicine at UCL Medical School and completed a BSc in Orthopaedics at the RNOH, with research into degenerative intervertebral discs. Having trained as a Specialist Registrar on the North West London rotation (including several years at the RNOH), he completed the Vancouver Combined Neurosurgical and Orthopaedic Spine Fellowship in Canada. He was appointed as a consultant spine surgeon in Vancouver in 2010 and took up his current post at the RNOH in 2012. He also trained in Bordeaux (endoscopic microdiscectomies) and has completed certified North American training in kyphoplasty and disc arthoplasty.

His work as a spinal surgeon in Stanmore routinely involves all areas of the spine and in particular highly complex cases that have been referred from centres around the UK. This includes degenerative, deformity, infection, tumour and trauma work. He specialises in minimally invasive fusions and decompressions with the emphasis on preservation of the paraspinal musculature and fast rehabilitation.

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