Object. Utilization of pedicle screws (PS) for spine stabilization is common in spinal surgery. With reliance on visual inspection of anatomical landmarks prior to screw placement, the free-hand technique requires a high level of surgeon skill and precision. Three-dimensional (3D) computer-assisted virtual neuronavigation improves the precision of PS placement and minimize steps. Methods. Twenty-three patients with degenerative, traumatic, or neoplastic pathologies received treatment via a novel three-step PS technique that utilizes a navigated power driver in combination with virtual screw technology. 1) Following visualization of neuroanatomy using intraoperative CT, a navigated 3-mm match stick drill bit was inserted at anatomical entry point with screen projection showing virtual screw. 2) Navigated Stryker Cordless Driver with appropriate tap was used to access vertebral body through pedicle with screen projection again showing virtual screw. 3) Navigated Stryker Cordless Driver with actual screw was used with screen projection showing the same virtual screw. One hundred and forty-four consecutive screws were inserted using this three-step, navigated driver, virtual screw technique. Results. Only 1 screw needed intraoperative revision after insertion using the three-step, navigated driver, virtual PS technique. This amounts to a 0.69% revision rate. One hundred percent of patients had intraoperative CT reconstructed images to confirm hardware placement. Conclusions. Pedicle screw placement utilizing the Stryker-Ziehm neuronavigation virtual screw technology with a three step, navigated power drill technique is safe and effective.
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