ImageGuide and GE Medical Systems to promote Image-Guided Robot-Assisted Surgery platforms

Baltimore 09 September 2002ImageGuide Inc. has opened new headquarters in Baltimore, Maryland, USA, and launched a new era in Image-Guided Robot-Assisted Surgery (IGRS). The company's minimally invasive surgical systems will seamlessly integrate imaging platforms, including Computed Tomography (CT), Fluoroscopy, Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) and Ultrasound technologies, with medical robotics to deliver real time, needle driven, therapeutic interventions.

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ImageGuide Inc. is working with one of its strategic partners, GE Medical Systems, to develop the next generation of IGRS platforms. GE Medical's imaging technology, including CT scanners and mobile C-arms, will help physicians precisely localise disease and anatomy for proper IGRS intervention.

ImageGuide Inc. is commercialising patented technology licensed from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and the National Science Foundation funded Engineering Research Center for Computer-Integrated Surgical Systems and Technology (ERC/CISST).

It is anticipated that the ImageGuide technology will enhance patient care through improved accuracy and speed, lower medical costs, and that it will lead to reduced radiation exposure to medical practitioners.

"We look forward to widespread adoption of this technology by physicians, potentially enabling community hospitals to offer procedures which previously could only be performed by major medical centres or teaching hospitals", stated John Kroon, CEO of ImageGuide. "Emerging telemedicine capabilities and related military applications are also supported through this technology."

These IGRS procedures will focus on creating novel solutions to treat diseases and benefit patients globally. Specifically, ImageGuide will target orthopaedic, soft tissue, and micro-surgical applications. Initial needle based procedures include soft tissue biopsies, RF ablation, and spinal pain management. Clinical trials utilising research systems have been performed by ImageGuide technology partners.

"Marrying imaging technology with robot-assisted surgical platforms has real value to physicians, and ultimately their patients", stated Dow Wilson, General Manager, Global Surgery and Vascular Imaging, Diagnostic X-Ray, GE Medical Systems. "Improved IGRS systems, like those being designed by ImageGuide, will give physicians more confidence that they have treated all disease and injury the first time, resulting in fewer repeat procedures for patients."


Leslie Versweyveld

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