A neuronavigator is a system that allows to “navigate through the brain”, like the GPS of a car but in the brain. A car’s GPS shows a map of the roads in real time, while in the brain’s GPS there is a mold of the brain made with an MRI and a scanner, which is updated in real time and can be used to guide surgery.
It works on the basis of a system of cameras that record a fixed point attached to the patient’s head, so its position with respect to the patient’s head is always known. In the spine it is more complicated to use, because an X-ray system is used, and a star placed in the pelvis or in an area of the spine called the spinous.
You know where you are at every moment, and it allows you to update. Even if you have an intraoperative image, you know how much tumor you have removed, how much you have not removed, where a part is missing and where it is not, so it allows you to improve the resection and the implants to be used.
For skull surgery, it is used in brain tumors, arteriovenous malformations, fistulas and in localization of deep structures, especially.
In the spine, it is used for complex surgery, deformity surgery. It is also very common in long surgeries, and in cases of tumors. In the case of tumors whose beginning and end is not very well known, since it is very covered with bone. It is also very useful for placing implants in screws, bars or whatever you need.
For more information, consult a specialist in Neurosurgery.