According to the Facility Guidelines Institute, a hybrid operating room is defined as “an
operating room that has permanently
installed equipment to enable diagnostic
imaging before, during, and after surgi-
cal procedures.” FGI adds that the “use
of portable imaging technology does not
make an OR a hybrid operating room.”
While one could argue the semantics of
a definition and its true versus intended
impact, the reality is that this statement
and its relation to hybrid OR design and
integration gives stronger credence to the
use of diagnostic imaging equipment in
the operating room. Whether or not hav-
ing such equipment “qualifies” an OR as
hybrid or not is secondary.
Of most importance, obviously, is
how the significant investment demanded by these products positively impacts
patient outcomes, and if those outcomes
warrant the investment. In speaking
with industry thought leaders, it seems
qualifying that return on investment
will depend on the types of procedures
a facility performs most frequently, the
amount of use the imaging equipment
will see, and how much time can be
saved as a result.
Sudhir Kulkarni is the segment
director of hybrid OR at Siemens
Healthcare. He offers some perspective on the origins of housing imaging
equipment within the OR. “Everybody
wants to incorporate more minimally
invasive approaches to surgery because
of the expected faster recovery times
and the smaller incisions they entail,”
“It is a win/win for everybody.
However, smaller cuts mean there
is a need for better visualization.
Flouroscopy is one such way that provides visualization of the underlying
vessels," states Kulkarni. Unfortunately,
the laparoscopic image is not always
good enough if surgeons desire to see
more of what is going on inside. This is
where the need for a fixed angiogram or
mobile C-arm comes into play.
Jay D. Miller, president and CEO of
IMRIS sees similar trends. “A growing
number of hospitals are adding diagnostic quality MRI, CT, angiography or
other types of imaging systems typically
found in radiology departments,” he
states. “Access to this visualization during certain procedures helps clinicians
improve precision and reduce patient
risks, thus leading to better overall
“The concept is also becoming more
necessary as clinical teams explore new
techniques and procedures, especially
less invasive approaches that can be less
traumatic for patients and lead to better
outcomes and recovery,” offers Miller.
Some of the primary applications for
imaging thus far have included:
• Knowledge is power – especially in
healthcare. So, by getting a better
perspective on surrounding tissue
and blood flow, surgeons have been
able to perform cardiac transcatheter
procedures more efficiently because
they encounter fewer surprises once
the operation begins.
• A growing application has been
orthopedic and spine surgeries to
ensure proper implant placements.
• According to Kulkarni, by getting a
How investments in imaging equipment can enhance minimally invasive procedures
and hybrid OR developments.
by Jeff Reinke, editorial director
Although expensive, advanced imaging equipment unquestionably provides a number of
patient care and surgeon recruitment benefits when utilized properly.