The increasing use of motion preserving devices in the spine has highlighted the need for accurate kinematic measurement tools to evaluate the performance of these new implants. In addition to quantifying the motion of the implant itself, it is also desirable to measure how implants affect the motion at adjacent vertebral levels. Single plane fluoroscopy has been used for over 15 years to analyze the in vivo motions of total knee replacement implants, with reported accuracies of 0.5–1.0 deg for rotations and 0.5 mm for in plane translations1,2. It is our goal to apply this type of image registration technique to the spine, so that accurate 3D kinematics of vertebral motion can be measured in vivo. This involves a significant extension to previous work, instead of tracking silhouettes of implants, we proposed to use digitally reconstructed radiograph images generated from a CT as the basis for image registration. The purpose of this project was to develop a methodology that would enable the 3D position and orientation (pose) of a vertebral body to be accurately measured from a single plane fluoroscopic image.

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