Metro Health adds robotic technology for early detection of lung cancer
WYOMING, MI – Metro Health – University of Michigan Health, as a member of the Cancer Network of West Michigan, is at the forefront of using robotic technology to diagnose lung cancer earlier.
The Grand Rapids area health system’s use of Western Michigan’s first ion robot-assisted bronchoscopy tool will help diagnose lung cancer at the earliest and most difficult to reach stages, according to the press release Wednesday announcing technology.
Health officials expect this new tool to improve hope for survival from lung cancer, the leading cause of cancer death.
“Historically, most lung cancer diagnoses have been late,” said Dr Mounir Ghali, director of interventional pulmonology at Metro Health. “When we are able to detect, diagnose and treat earlier, we can help a patient survive cancer.”
Ghali has been equipped, since September 21, with the world’s most advanced tool for rapid, safe and accurate diagnosis, according to Dr. Peter Hahn, president and CEO of Metro Health – University of Michigan Health.
Ionic robotic bronchoscopy complements the work of Metro Health’s lung cancer screening clinic, which performs scans on high-risk patients to uncover potential problems. If a CT scan reveals nodules, a biopsy is needed for diagnosis.
Early stage cancers are usually very small and located in hard-to-reach parts of the lungs. The robot’s shape-sensing technology allows Ghali to accurately guide a thin catheter through the patient’s mouth into the airway tree and safely perform a biopsy, even in the smallest areas and areas. more distant from the lung.
The procedure takes an hour or less and patients return home after recovering from anesthesia and then can return to work the next day, health officials said in the statement.
“The Ion system offers significant advantages over previous bronchoscopy technology,” said Hahn, who is also a pulmonologist. “This illustrates our ongoing efforts to improve options for patients facing the possibility of lung cancer.”
Ionic robotic bronchoscopy is used with cone beam CT technology to generate a three-dimensional roadmap to the target area. The computer acts like a GPS while a vision probe provides real-time visualization inside a patient’s airway as the doctor guides a catheter along the path.
The narrow 3.5 millimeter diameter of the catheter allows it to maneuver safely in tight corners, reaching all segments of the lung. The tool is also compatible with existing medical equipment, including scanning devices that support real-time navigation. Once the target is reached, a needle inside the catheter collects the biopsy.
“The lifesaving potential of the Ion robot illustrates … lung screenings are essential to our overall strategy to improve cancer outcomes,” said Dr. Terrance Barnes, who performs the screenings for Metro Health. “Studies show that lung screens help reduce cancer deaths, especially when combined with smoking cessation programs.”
Doctors and researchers agree that quitting smoking is the most important step in preventing lung cancer. Information on lung screening is available at Metro Health website for patients with questions about their risk factors.
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