Intra-operative neuro-monitoring

Leaders in brain, vascular & spinal cord monitoring

  1300 735 971

Neurophysiology Services Australia

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Your Surgeon has requested Spinal Cord Monitoring for your procedure. Depending on the surgery, there are different techniques that may be used at your Surgeon's discretion.

This page gives you an overview of the procedure and answers some questions you may have.

  • The Procedure
    The Technologist is in communication with your Surgeon and the Anaesthetist to determine the level of monitoring that is required for your procedure.

    Once you are asleep the Technologist will place small needle electrodes into key positions in your scalp and in specific muscles in your body. Once you are positioned for the surgery initial readings are taken and a baseline is set.

    During your surgery additional tests are performed and compared to this baseline. Your Surgeon will be alerted to any significant changes during your operation.
  • Is It Safe?
    Yes, the risks of Spinal Cord Monitoring are extremely low.
  • Does It Hurt?
    No. You are asleep when the needle electrodes are placed and removed. You may however notice some small needle marks on your skin when you wake up.
  • Does It Eliminate Risks?
    Your Surgeon will outline the risks associated with your particular surgery. Spinal Cord Monitoring does not eliminate these risks however the monitoring serves as an early warning signal to identify potential nerve injury and gives the Surgeon real time information on nerve function.

    If there is any change in the nerve function the Technologist will inform the Surgeon and they will take any necessary action during your operation.
  • Indications
    Spinal Cord Monitoring may be used in complicated spine procedures including:

    • Deformity Surgery, Scoliosis & Kyphosis
    • Complex Lumbar or Thoracolumbar Fusion
    • Cervical Spinal Fusions
    • Tumour Removal Surgery
    • Other surgery where nerve structures may be a significant risk
  • Considerations
    Please alert your Technologist if you have any of the following issues:

    • Implanted stimulating devices such as pacemakers, cochlear implants, vagal nerve stimulators, any device with batteries or magnets.
    • Previous brain injury or surgery, particularly if you have any bone defects or implants such as aneurysm clips or plates & screws around the scalp & eyes.
    • Epilepsy; type, severity, treatment.
    • Significant peripheral nerve issues such as carpal tunnel syndrome, peripheral neuropathy, or factors that may effect nerve function such as diabetes or recent infections such as shingles.
    • These considerations will not always prevent monitoring however, it may be necessary for the Technologist to make adjustments to the monitoring technique to increase the safety and accuracy of the recordings.
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  1300 735 971
  PO Box 6919, Baulkham Hills BC NSW 2153

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