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During a festive opening by Minister Ernst Kuipers of Health, Welfare and Sport, the intra-operative MRI operating room at the Wilhelmina Children's Hospital (WKZ) was officially inaugurated. The IO MRI-OK is a collaboration between the Princess Máxima Center and the UMC Utrecht. This special operating room is for children with brain tumors.
Together with children from the Máxima Center and WKZ, the minister built a block tower in the operating room and via a start button they opened the doors to the adjacent MRI. This officially opened the IO MRI-OK today.
More accurate surgery
Worldwide, there are only a few places with a similar combination of MRI with OR. An MRI in the operating room offers the possibility to make new MRI scans of the surgical area during neurosurgical surgery, providing an exact representation of the actual anatomical proportions. With this, the IO MRI provides information about the size of the remaining tumor and its proportions to the healthy surrounding brain tissue. The neurosurgeon can thus remove more tumor tissue more safely and accurately. As a result, complications and re-operations can be prevented and the final result of the surgery improves. The Princess Máxima Center uses the OR complex at the WKZ for all operations, where surgeons and OR staff work intensively together.
Gita Gallé, board of directors of the Princess Máxima Center: 'The IO MRI-OK is unique in the Netherlands and an asset for children with brain tumors. It raises neurosurgical care for children to a higher level. Between two 'building blocks' of the WKZ building, a new building for the IO MRI OR has been created. Our neurosurgeons operate in this OR facility and work closely with the UMC Utrecht OR teams. A bridge connects the two buildings; the bridge symbolizes this cooperation.'
The UMC Utrecht and the Princess Máxima Center have already been working closely together since 2014 in the daily care of children with cancer and in various research programs. Also in neurosurgical procedures, the WKZ, part of UMC Utrecht, and the specialists from the Princess Máxima Center work together to provide the best possible nationwide concentrated care for children with cancer.