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Handheld Device for Fluorescence-Guided Surgery a Game Changer for Removal of High-Grade Glioma Brain Tumors

By HospiMedica International staff writers
Posted on 06 May 2024
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Image: NICO SPECTRA is only hand-held technology delivering blue light closer to target to enhance tissue fluorescence (Photo courtesy of NICO Corporation)
Image: NICO SPECTRA is only hand-held technology delivering blue light closer to target to enhance tissue fluorescence (Photo courtesy of NICO Corporation)

Grade III or IV gliomas are among the most common and deadly brain tumors, with around 20,000 cases annually in the U.S. and 1.2 million globally. These tumors are very aggressive and tend to infiltrate surrounding brain tissue, making surgical removal challenging. Surgeons often use fluorescence-guided techniques to maximize safe tumor resection, but this approach has its difficulties, including shadows cast by surgical instruments, the microscope’s magnification and focus, and how the patient is positioned. Now, an innovative hand-held device that emits blue excitation light to enhance tissue fluorescence can revolutionize the surgical removal of these types of serious brain tumors.

NICO Corporation’s (Indianapolis, IN, USA) NICO Myriad SPECTRA System is the only hand-held technology that delivers blue light directly to the surgical target to enhance tissue fluorescence. The SPECTRA system's light, combining blue and white light sources, attaches to NICO’s resection handpiece, providing targeted illumination precisely where needed. It also offers surgeons the flexibility to adjust the intensity of both the white and blue light independently and to switch between them without losing focus on the surgical area.

The SPECTRA System facilitates illumination, resection, collection, and biological preservation of tissue in surgeries for brain tumors and intracerebral hemorrhages, employing both minimally invasive and traditional open craniotomy methods. The SPECTRA Light Source has received clearance from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and is also approved for sale and clinical use by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) in the United Kingdom.

"For patients undergoing the surgical resection standard of care for high-grade glioma brain tumors, our innovation offers an opportunity for improved extent of resection – a better version of the surgical gold standard of care," noted Jim Pearson, president and CEO of NICO Corporation, the worldwide leader in minimally invasive neurosurgery. "Published evidence over the last decade suggests that fluorescence-guided surgery improves extent of resection and patient outcomes, making the introduction of our SPECTRA technology particularly significant."

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