The Preoperative Planning Project is developing a software tool, Vulture, for visualisation, manipulation and point identification of large 3D medical image data sets. From a large stack of medical images (Computed Tomography (CT) or Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) slices) a 3D image is generated which can be viewed and cross-sectioned from any direction. The software provides different 2D cross-sections of the 3D image as well as advanced 3D projections of the data using Graphics Processing Unit (GPU) ray casting. The user is able to identify and label points of interest on any of these cross-sections or projections, and the 3D coordinate information of the identified points can be exported for use in surgical planning. Vulture is developed within the MILXSim software platform.
The initial application of this tool was to assist in the planning of scoliosis surgery, which is a sideways deformity of the spine. Surgery usually involves screwing one or two metal rods onto the spine to straighten it. Common complications are rod breakage or pull out of the screws during or after surgery, with occurrence rates reported of up to 30%. To improve the success rate, the Paediatric Spine Research Group, a collaboration between the Queensland University of Technology, Mater Health Services Brisbane Ltd, and the Queensland Orthopaedic Research Trust, are developing a method to generate finite element models of the patient's spine, which are used to model the proposed surgical correction and analyse beforehand any potential risks to a successful long-term outcome. These models are built using a large set of landmarks on the spine, which can be identified from CT images efficiently using the Vulture software.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 12 October 2011 12:43