The intraoperative MRI suite at the UC Medical Center enables neurosurgeons to examine a tumor site and to confirm, while the patient is still under anesthesia, that the tumor has been entirely removed. If the MRI images show remaining fragments of the tumor, neurosurgeons can complete the tumor removal at that time. Confirmation that a tumor has been completely removed has the potential to spare the patient additional surgery and/or radiation treatment following surgery.
The UC Neuroscience Institute has shown the benefits of intraoperative MRI technology in clinical studies. These studies demonstrated that in patients with gliomas and pituitary tumors, conventional surgery using computer guidance frequently did not achieve adequate tumor removal. When intraoperative MRI showed the need for additional tumor removal, surgeons were able to remove the additional tissue immediately.
Brain tumor specialists began using the Hitachi AIRIS II MRI at the UC Medical Center in 1997 and have a decade of experience with this important technology. The intraoperative MRI is used routinely during the surgical removal of gliomas (both low-grade and malignant) and pituitary tumors.