Intraoperative Neuromonitoring (IONM)
Surgery on the brain, spinal cord and spine must be performed with the utmost precision in order to prevent complications and minimize any secondary damage. Electrophysiological monitoring during surgery, or intraoperative neuromonitoring (IONM), is one way to protect particularly critical brain regions, the spinal cord and individual nerves.
How does IONM work with the brain?
There is a wide range of techniques for monitoring the functioning of important structures when operating on patients under anesthesia. This involves the electrophysiological monitoring of individual brain and nerve functions during the neurosurgical procedure. Changes during the surgery are monitored with highly sensitive measurements, providing the surgeon with important information.
This state-of-the-art technology makes it possible to minimize the risk of a negative impact on speech or movement. Hearing, the functioning of facial muscles and blood flow to the cerebral vessels can be monitored as well during the operation.
Preventing nerve lesions
During many operations it is important to protect the nerves in the region undergoing the operation, such as the vocal nerve during thyroid surgery. The surgeon can use special devices and electrodes to apply targeted electrical stimulation to help them locate, identify and protect the nerve path.
Depending on case or part of the body is being operated on, the monitoring can be performed during the entire operation.
Applications for intraoperative neuromonitoring
- Surgery on the brain and on the central nervous system (removal of tumors, epilepsy surgery, etc.)
- Spinal surgery
- Surgery for thyroid disorders
- Surgery in the minor pelvis region, such as on the intestine (removal of rectal cancer)
- Parotid gland surgery
- Surgery on the carotid artery