Understanding the design of electromagnetic navigation technology

An example of an embedded electromagnetic (EM) sensor in a catheter tip [Image courtesy of Intricon]

As electromagnetic navigation becomes the top choice for surgical navigation, sensor and design considerations are critical.

David Bosch, Intricon

Since its inception in the 1990s to widespread adoption by the late 2000s, electromagnetic navigation (EMN) has emerged as the clear choice for surgical navigation and has been widely adopted in the fields of interventional bronchoscopy, urology, neurosurgery and cardiology.

A properly designed EMN system has several advantages. It can localize with the precision of optical tracking without the need for a line-of sight. It offers the convenience of fluoroscopy for intra-patient visualization without the application of ionizing radiation. And it does not expose the patient to energy fields that any more harmful than ultrasound.

Unlike alternative navi…

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