Computer-assisted navigation for real time planning of pedicle subtraction osteotomy in cervico-thoracic deformity correction

John H. Shin, Vijay Yanamadala, Thomas D. Cha

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: Pedicle subtraction osteotomy (PSO) at the cervicothoracic junction (CTJ) is a powerful technique to correct severe kyphosis and sagittal malalignment. Reported techniques have demonstrated the safety and efficacy of the PSO, however limited visualization of surrounding tissues increases the potential for complications with this advanced technique. OBJECTIVE: To describe the application of computed tomographic (CT)-based image guidance to the planning and execution of PSO at the CTJ. METHODS: Intraoperative registration and verification of anatomic landmarks are performed with the intraoperative O-arm CT across the CTJ. With the navigation probe, the targeted pedicle is identified and the intended trajectories are rehearsed and saved on the navigational computer. As the PSO is performed, the navigation probe is used to check the depth, accuracy, and trajectory through each side. The extent of soft tissue dissection around the lateral aspect of the vertebral body through which the PSO is performed is also verified in real time. This technique was performed in 12 consecutive patients from 2013-2016. An IRB approved, retrospective analysis was performed from a prospective spinal deformity outcomes database. Patient consent is not required for publication as this report does not describe a specific case but rather a surgical technique used in practice. RESULTS: There were no vascular, esophageal, or soft tissue injuries in 12 consecutive patients. There were no cases of paralysis. Two patients developed hand weakness days after surgery. Intraoperative O-arm CT performed after closure of the osteotomy confirmed the accuracy of the osteotomy planning with no breach of the anterior cortical wall of the osteotomized vertebral body. CONCLUSION: CT-guided navigation allows for 3-dimensional visualization of the CTJ and minimizes complications associated with inadequate surgical visualization of vascular and deep organ structures.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)445-450
Number of pages6
JournalOperative Neurosurgery
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • Cervical kyphosis
  • Image guidance navigation
  • Pedicle subtraction osteotomy
  • Spinal deformity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology


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