Introducing the ALIF training simulation for spinal surgery

Tech for Good! Tech for Health! It’s one thing to talk about it, but it’s even better to act upon it…

Medical technology leader Johnson & Johnson MedTech, through Ethicon, Inc.VirtualiSurg, and 3 French surgeons – Prof. Jérôme Allain, Prof. Nicolas LONJON and Dr. Jean Meyblum, decided to combine their efforts to transform the way young surgeons are trained.

For VirtualiSurg, it is a source of great pride to successfully accomplish this mission and share a pioneering vision with three outstanding surgeons and the team at Ethicon, in particular Lianne CastellanValérie ValliereAlexandra Cadoux and Maéva Perret-Maria, with the ongoing invaluable support of Francois Gaudemet and his team.

This collaboration focuses on a highly complex surgical technique, #ALIF (Anterior Lumbar Interbody Fusion). This unique spinal surgery procedure is performed through the abdominal approach, requiring mastery not only of the fundamentals of #orthopaedic surgery, but also of those involved in #visceral & #vascular surgery.

Young surgeons, according to a study carried out in 2021 by the AJCR Academy – France (Association for Young Spinal Surgeons) in France, consider it to be the procedure they are least prepared for and which therefore represents a major source of #stress. Furthermore, as in all highly technical and high-risk professions, stress and medical safety do not go hand-in-hand.

To develop essential #confidence, access to the right learning tools is paramount, and yet until now, no training solution, aside from practice on real patients, has been available for the ALIF procedure.

Thanks to the aforementioned three-party collaboration, young surgeons finally have access to a training tool that enables them to train in conditions identical to those of a real operating theatre and to touch and handle human organs with realistic physical sensations. In addition to virtual reality, the simulator uses patented #haptic technology to provide surgeons with #life-mimicking force feedback. Complication management is also an integral part of the XR ALIF simulation training programme.

Like aeroplane pilots, surgeons now have a dedicated simulator to guide them on their hazardous journey from the abdomen to the spine.
The #metaverse is already having an impact.

Click here to watch our launch video.

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