Pindara Private Hospital leads nation in new spinal surgery technology
By: Ramsay Health Care
The high-tech operation, by Gold Coast Spine surgeons Associate Professor Matthew Scott-Young and Assistant Professor Laurence McEntee, used a new million-dollar Mazor X Stealth Edition Robot to plan and guide more than 20 metal implants into the spine of Proserpine solicitor Lindy Telford, who suffered from scoliosis (a sideways curvature of the spine).
"I was pretty nervous leading up to the surgery but I had a 55 degree curve in my spine that was likely to get worse by about one degree every year," Ms Telford said.
"I'm 35 now and wanted to have the surgery while I'm relatively young and fit."
Assoc. Prof. Scott-Young said the robotic equipment allowed surgeons to pinpoint the exact placement and trajectory of implants into the spine.
"Normally, surgeons rely on freehand techniques and x-rays to place screws and rods in complex spine surgery," he said.
"The Mazor X system tracks the position of instruments in relation to the patient's anatomy to improve accuracy, which is vital in operations like Lindy's where the spinal cord and vital organs might be only two or three millimetres away.
"It means less time under anaesthetic, fewer x-rays, smaller incisions and faster recovery."
Pindara Private Hospital Chief Executive Officer Mark Page said investing in the Mazor X Stealth Edition was yet another initiative by Pindara to ensure that people living on the Gold Coast and surrounding communities have access to leading edge equipment.
Ms Telford was diagnosed with scoliosis when she was 25.
"Since then, it has grown worse and in recent years I've found I need to do a lot of physiotherapy and massage and exercise just to keep it in check," she said.
"The first week after the operation was pretty tough but, since then, I've grown more mobile and flexible to the point that I'm now back at the gym daily and lifting weights.
"I'm looking forward to getting back into yoga."
Assoc. Prof. Scott-Young said Gold Coast Spine had been monitoring the Mazor X platform as it evolved overseas.
"Now is the right time to harness this technology,"