3D VR Tech Treats Aneurysms Before They Burst

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3D VR Tech Treats Aneurysms Before They Burst
February 17, 2017

One in 50 people in the United States has a brain aneurysm that hasn't ruptured yet. Treating these weak bulging spots on the walls of arteries before they burst is a complicated process.

 

Doctors need precise details to do it successfully. Until recently, they used two-dimensional images to understand what they were dealing with.

 

At the Lahey Hospital & Medical Center in Burlington, Dr. In Sup Choi and his team are now using virtual reality technology to get new perspectives on the brain aneurysms they treat every day.

 

EchoPixel software allows the doctors to virtually go inside the area they are about to treat. Using a stylus, they can turn and manipulate the 3D hologram image of an aneurysm. They also can measure it to more accurately size the pipeline device they'll need to treat it.

 

That precision matters. If the device is too small, it won't close the entrance to the aneurysm. Choi said the new software has already helped them achieve better outcomes for patients.

 

Right now, they're working on a 3D printer that can create models of the actual cases they're working on, allowing them to practice the specific procedure.

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