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Augmented reality spine surgery

IDAHO FALLS, Idaho (KIFI) - Spinal surgery is now a little easier at Mountain View Hospital in Idaho Falls thanks to augmented reality headsets.

The headsets come from Augmedics and are the first to be used in Idaho.

 The device guides surgeons in placing screws in the vertebrae so they can tie them together with metal for healing.

 It starts with the C arm, rotating and taking pictures of the patient's spine like an x-ray.

It then creates a CAT scan-like image, which can then be projected onto those lenses on the headsets.

"And then we can transpose that over to where it appears that we're looking at the patient's spine, without being able to actually see it," spinal surgeon Dr. Lynn Stromberg said. "So it's like a 3D animation, that allows us to carry out the operation without having to expose things as much."

This type of equipment allows the surgeons to get more hands-on than strictly robotic systems.

 It also means patients get back on their feet faster after surgery.

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Rachel Fabbi

Rachel Fabbi is a reporter, anchor and producer for Local News 8 and Eyewitness News 3.

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