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J Craniofac Surg. 2012 Jan;23(1):272-8. doi: 10.1097/SCS.0b013e318241bac7.

Advances and innovations in computer-assisted head and neck oncologic surgery.

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  • 1Department of Craniomaxillofacial Surgery, Hannover Medical School, Hannover, Germany.


Over the past years, computer-assisted surgery has gained more importance in craniomaxillofacial surgery, especially in primary and secondary treatment of head and neck malignancies. The basis for oncologic treatment of the head and neck region requires detailed planning using computed tomography, cone-beam computed tomography, or magnetic resonance imaging in combination with computer-assisted, infrared-based navigation system. These techniques allow a preplanned image-guided path to the tumor region for taking biopsies, resection, or reconstruction. The aim of this work was to show the advances and technical benefits for tumor surgery in a daily clinical routine from the view of the craniomaxillofacial surgeon. The target of our working group was to develop and clinically evaluate a novel three-dimensional planning and navigation software solution for treatment of craniofacial tumors. This work was carried out on 5 categories for oncologic surgical procedures in which computer-assisted surgery was applied from 2005 to 2011: preplanned trajectorial-guided tumor biopsy, intraoperative image-controlled tumor resection, tumor mapping, reconstruction after tumor surgery (true to original), and oral rehabilitation (backward planning). Successful preoperative planning, import of image data suitable for navigation, and intraoperative precise infrared-based navigation were obtained for all 5 categories without any complications. Image-guided navigation technique for head and neck oncologic surgery provides a precise, safe surgical method with real-time excellent anatomic orientation. Regarding the advantages of computer-assisted surgery, this technique will play a major part in craniofacial reconstructive surgery and will address widespread general methodologic solutions that are of great interest in multidisciplinary oncologic treatment.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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