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For release: February 7, 2013

Amy Kilgore 330.344.6014, amy.kilgore@akrongeneral.org
Jim Gosky 330.344.6083, jim.gosky@akrongeneral.org

Akron General elevates neuroscience care with premier neurosurgical suites and intraoperative imaging

Northeast Ohio health system boasts one of only four intraoperative MRI and CT suites in the United States

Visions come to fruition at Akron General Health System, most recently in the form of innovative surgery suites featuring intraoperative MRI and intraoperative CT systems. The addition of the intraoperative surgical suites has secured Akron General’s Neuroscience Institute as the area’s distinct leader in neurologic and neurosurgical care, offering the most advanced treatment and technology in addition to the premier specialists for which Akron General is known.

Akron General is one of only four hospitals in the nation to offer both intraoperative scanning systems as well as a state-of-the-art biplane angiographic suite. Brainsuite® iMRI and iCT suites, installed by software-driven medical technology manufacturer Brainlab, allow for real-time imaging during surgical procedures. Images taken during surgery are compared to images taken prior to surgery to ensure accuracy and preserve normal, healthy tissue and important neural pathways. Applications include, but are not limited to, brain tumors, pituitary tumors, epilepsy, spinal fusion, trauma, bleeds, orthopedic conditions, and breast and liver surgery.

“Previously, a patient would undergo surgery, then a day or two later have an MRI or CT to check the success of the surgery, then go back into surgery if necessary,” explains Sarel “Charl” Vorster, MD, medical director, Neuroscience Institute. “With intraoperative scanning, the need for these steps is eliminated. The imaging is performed while the patient is still under anesthetic and further surgical action, if needed, is taken right at that moment.” Utilizing this technology results in a higher level of accuracy, increased patient safety, reduced re-operation rates, faster recovery times, shorter hospital stays, less anesthesia and expedited additional treatment when necessary.

The state-of-the-art biplane angiographic suite focused on the minimally invasive treatment of cerebrovascular disorders such as strokes, aneurysms and arterial-venous malformations of the brain and spinal cord. It can also be used to provide adjunctive treatments for brain and spinal tumors as well as treatment for spinal fractures.

The physical location of the intraoperative suites at Akron General offers another distinct advantage. “What’s unique about the setup we have at Akron General is that all the suites and the neurological intensive care unit are within a short walking distance on the same floor, which makes patient care safer and more effective, as well as more efficient for the hospital,” says Georges Z. Markarian, MD, chairman, Neuroscience Institute. “This entire initiative is patient and safety driven and by far provides the most precise, efficient, cutting-edge neurosurgical care.”

The comprehensive spectrum of care provided by Akron General’s Neuroscience Institute also includes a Neuro Intensive Care Unit completely dedicated to patients with neurological conditions and the area's only Gamma Knife radiosurgical technology for brain tumors, both opened in 2012. Akron General’s Gamma Knife Center is one of only five in the state of Ohio and the only one located between Cleveland and Columbus.

For more information, including details on the Akron General Neuroscience Institute team and additional treatments available, visit www.akrongeneral.org/neuro.

About Akron General Health System
Akron General Health System is a not-for-profit healthcare organization with the mission of improving the health and lives of the people and communities it serves. Akron General Health System includes: Akron General Medical Center, a 511-bed teaching and research medical center, and Edwin Shaw Rehabilitation Institute, the area’s largest provider of rehabilitation services; Akron General Partners, which includes Partners Physician Group, the Akron General Health & Wellness Centers, Lodi Community Hospital, Community Health Centers and other companies; Akron General Community Health Ventures, which includes Visiting Nurse Service and Affiliates, the largest and most comprehensive provider of home healthcare services in Ohio; and Akron General Foundation. Recently, U.S. News & World Report ranked Akron General Medical Center as the seventh best hospital in Ohio and Becker’s Hospital Review named Akron General Medical Center one of the nation’s top 100 hospitals. For more information about Akron General Health System, visit www.akrongeneral.org.

About Brainlab
Brainlab develops, manufactures and markets software-driven medical technology, enabling access to improved, more efficient, less-invasive patient treatments.

Core products revolve around less-invasive image guided surgery technology, more accurate and effective radiation therapy, and integration through planning and collaboration systems that bring patient data and physicians together.

Brainlab technology currently powers treatments in the fields of neurosurgery, radiation oncology, orthopedics, ENT, CMF, spine, and trauma.

Privately held since its formation in Munich, Germany in 1989, Brainlab has more than 5,000 systems installed in about 80 countries. Brainlab employs 1,120 people in 17 offices worldwide, including 290 Research & Development engineers, who form a crucial part of the product development team. Learn more at www.brainlab.com.



Akron General Medical Center • 1 Akron General Avenue (Formerly 400 Wabash Avenue) • Akron, OH 44307 • 330-344-6000 • 1-800-221-4601    © 2014 Akron General Health System
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