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Wearable Technology During Surgery Provides Neurosurgeons With Postural Info

Pilot study included neurosurgeons performing cranial and spinal procedures

By Lori Solomon HealthDay Reporter

WEDNESDAY, April 24, 2024 (HealthDay News) — Wearable technology is feasible to assess postural ergonomics and provide objective biofeedback to neurosurgeons, according to a pilot study published online April 19 in the Journal of Neurosurgery: Spine.

Alejandro Zulbaran-Rojas, M.D., from Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, and colleagues examined the feasibility of using wearable technology as a biofeedback tool for neurosurgeons. For the study. 10 neurosurgeons were equipped with two wearable sensors attached to the back of their head and their upper back. The analysis included 16 recordings from 11 procedures.

The researchers found that surgeons maintained a static posture during 52.7 percent of the active surgical time (mean, 1.58 hours). During spine procedures, use of an exoscope while standing led to significantly longer time spent in a neutral static posture compared with an extended or flexed static posture. Similar findings were seen for attendings and trainees. During cranial procedures, transitions between standing exoscope use and sitting microscope use led to shorter time in a neutral static posture and a longer time in a flexed static posture. During cranial procedures, surgeons spent a longer time in any static posture (extended, flexed, and neutral), with taller surgeons exhibiting longer periods in flexed and extended static postures. Postoperative self-assessment revealed variance in procedure type difficulty by trainees and attendings.

“Wearable technology can identify those periods when neglected postures are more prevalent, enabling prompt correction,” Zulbaran-Rojas said in a statement.

One author disclosed ties to BioSensics, a developer of wearable sensors.

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