Surgeons at Peninsula Regional Medical Center have been operating on patients with strokes, brain aneurysms, vascular malformations and intracranial stenosis, but now they can do so without making an incision.

Thanks, in part, to the opening of a new hybrid operating room with advanced medical imaging capabilities, patients now benefit from minimally invasive neurosurgery. Not only are procedures are performed with a needle puncture, but patients typically experience shorter hospital stays, faster recoveries and better outcomes.

Part of what makes this program possible is PRMC's brand-new hybrid OR, which has an interventional angiography biplane unit. Its two radiographic X-ray detectors provide imates in two planes simultaneously: one from the front and another from the side.

There are other healthcare facilities in Maryland that have this technology, but Medical Imaging Director Mary Lou Melhorn said PRMC’s equipment is used inside the operating room—not in the medical imaging department—which allows surgeons to take scans during a procedure.

“PRMC now has the same capability as the larger academic medical centers to provide advanced neuro procedures here on the Peninsula,” Melhorn said. “Providing this service closer to home will make a big difference for our patients -- in their recovery and peace of mind for their families.”

Before PRMC’s hybrid operating room opened, patients were forced to travel hours away to metropolitan hospitals for treatment. Now, Dr. Shakur said, patients don’t have to leave the Shore. It’s not only convenient, it will save lives.

“Time is brain, so this will have a big impact on patient outcomes. It really benefits patients medically to stay here,” said Dr. Sophia Shakur, a PRMC neurosurgeon. “If someone has a stroke, you really need to get to them within six hours or you can’t perform the procedure. For every 30 minutes that goes by, there’s a 10 percent decrease in a good outcome.”

Peninsula Regional Neurosurgery is part of Peninsula Regional Medical Group, a network of family medicine and specialty care offices in Maryland and Delaware owned and operated by Peninsula Regional Health System. If you have problems in the brain, neck, low back or carpal tunnel, call 410-912-6330 to make an appointment. Referalls are not necessary.