Radioguided surgery or radiodirected surgery consists of a series of techniques involving the use of radiopharmaceuticals administered to the patient before or during the surgical procedure. It is, therefore, a discipline halfway between Surgery and Nuclear Medicine, which requires the collaboration of specialists in both branches of modern medicine. Radioguided surgery (RGS) has been routinely used for more than a decade, for example in the field of sentinel lymph node biopsy.

However, there are many fields of application today. Interventions for various pathologies using these techniques are now commonplace and often have significant advantages:

  • Better aesthetic result

  • Less pain

  • General anesthesia can be avoided in most cases.

  • Reduces the number of cases in which hospitalization is necessary.

  • Increases the success rate

  • Allows a better study of the disease, improving the final treatment.

  • Allows a much more circumscribed excision of the lesion and even to operate on some lesions that were previously inoperable.

In general, radiodirected surgery is indicated when excision of a lesion or tissue of interest is required, both for histopathological diagnostic purposes and for therapeutic purposes, and provided that this technique has well-defined advantages compared to unguided surgical excision.

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It should be taken into account that radiodirected surgery has certain disadvantages, such as the greater complexity of the surgery, the higher cost and the use of ionizing radiation. Therefore, the advantages must be clear.

What can these advantages be?

Firstly, when there is no alternative, for example in sentinel lymph node biopsy, where radioguided surgery is frankly superior to the use of surgical dyes. Therefore, in this particular case, radioguided surgery is irreplaceable.

In cases where alternatives do exist, as for example in parathyroid adenoma surgery, the advantages of radioguided surgery are that of being able to establish a less aggressive surgical procedure (minimally invasive surgery) and that of greater speed and efficiency in exeresis, as well as easier access to adenomas of unusual anatomical location or of difficult access to manual exploration.

Today it is possible to perform this type of surgery with equipment designed and developed to detect anomalies during the surgical procedure. Equipment such as Gamma probes help to detect breast cancer and tumors during surgery.

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Intramedical Imaging is a company created in 1998. We specialize in the design, development and sale of medical equipment for the detection of cancer during surgery. Our molecular imaging equipment is the most sensitive and modern equipment that can be used during an operation to identify abnormal tissues.