Revolutionary technology allows surgeons to see 3D replica of patients' spines

An Arlington Heights company is giving surgeons X-ray vision.

Their revolutionary medical device is playing a role in reducing plain and recovery time after back surgery.

"It’s just a miracle that it can be done this way," said patient David Cruse.

He suffered from back pain for years until he had surgery five years ago. But the recovery took close to seven months and was painful. When he needed surgery again, he saw Dr. Bryan Bertoglio — a neurosurgeon with AMITA Health.

"One thing that brought me to medicine and neurosurgery in particular is the rapid evolution of technology and some of the fun toys we get to play with," said Dr. Bertoglio.


For months, he’s been using the xvision Spine System, developed by Augmedics in Arlington Heights. With the special device, he can see a 3D replica of his patient’s spine during surgery.

It’s much different than when Cruse initially had surgery.

"The old school way of doing it, they make a couple of really long incisions right on each side of your spine and kind of open you up so they're looking literally at the bone of your spine because that's where they have to work," said Cruse.

xvision provides a minimally invasive experience with a very short recovery period and very little scaring and pain.

"Word has to get out to people who are having back issues," said Cruse. "Maybe they've been scared off because of hearing about surgeries like I had in the past.  It's not like that anymore," he said.

The surgery is covered by insurance. Right now, xvision is only FDA approved for spinal surgery but the doctor believes it could be used for brain surgery in the future.