Computer-assisted surgery is the process of using medical images to improve patient care. A typical system begins by processing CAT scans or MRI scans, which a physician examines with image-analysis software. A preoperative plan is formulated, allowing a surgeon to perform "virtual surgery" on the patient to optimize the plan. In the operating room the medical image is registered to the patient's anatomy by finding an optimal rigid-body transformation. This transformation allows an object or motion in one coordinate frame to be represented in the other frame, and thus a surgeon can visualize the location of an intrument deep within concealed anatomy.
For the past five years, a multidisciplinary research group I lead has been investigating fundamental problems in orthopedic surgery of bones and joints. This talk will be an overview of the problems and our solutions, which have been tested in a set of pilot clinical trials over the past four years that involved more than 100 patients. We have concentrated on surgical procedures that are technically difficult or have high risk. This talk is directed at a general audience.
Randy Ellis is a Full Professor in Queen's University at Kingston. His primary appointment is in the School of Computing, and he is also appointed as a Full Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering and the Department of Surgery. He is the Project Leader of a large multidisciplinary group that has extensive clinical experience with computer modeling and guidance for orthopedic surgery. He has worked with surgeons in Canada, Italy, Sweden, and Saudi Arabia on ways to improve surgical procedures, and is currently on sabbatical leave at Johns Hopkins University to conduct collaborative research with the Engineering Research Center.