Computer assisted surgery is the use of computers to manipulate DICOM data for planning, performing and/or assessing surgery.
Computer assisted surgery can be broken down into three basic steps, presurgical planning, intraoperative, and postoperative applications.
The benefits of presurgical planning include:
- Improved diagnostic accuracy
- Virtual simulation of the surgical procedure
Intraoperatively, the main benefit of computer assisted surgery is improved accuracy of the surgical repair. This results from the use of:
- Intraoperative navigation
- Cutting and drill guides
- 3D printed models
- Patient specific implants
- Intraoperative CT
Postoperatively, assessment of the accuracy of a surgical procedure is facilitated.
Disadvantages of computer aided surgery are primarily related to the cost of the hardware and software. There is also a greater time requirement necessary for training and use of the planning software compared to traditional techniques.