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Volumetric Image Injection through a Surgical Microscope

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Image-guided neurosurgery is becoming a vital tool for diagnosing and treating intracranial tumors. Conventional stereotactic techniques, in which a reference frame is bolted to the skull, are being replaced by frameless systems that incorporate fiducial markers for registration. Such techniques provide the surgeon with interactive and intuitive access to the imaging data, e.g., magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) or computed tomography (CT), as multimodality displays in an ongoing surgical procedure.

A system for surgical navigation is proposed using an operating microscope that is tracked by an array of cameras. The proposed system allows for the overlay of segmented volumetric images onto the view of the surgical field as seen through the surgical microscope. The simulation of an environment for a fast, noninvasive system is also described. This technique permits neurosurgeons to navigate through the surgical microscope to explore the inner anatomical structures of the patient. In addition, this technique provides "on-the-fly" volumetric and multimodality information for surgical planning and lesion targeting.

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