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This chapter provides an overview of image-guided surgery (IGS). It focuses primarily on the applications of IGS in neurosurgery, as this is the area of its greatest application and in which the author has the most experience. It begins with a brief history of imaging techniques as they apply to the planning and guidance of surgical procedures and follows with a discussion of the various aspects that must be considered when implementing a computerized image-guided surgery system. Within the scope of IGS, it includes both the preoperative planning of surgical procedures based on images, as well as the guidance of the procedure itself. For a full treatment of many of the contemporary problems related to image-guided surgery and therapy, the reader is referred to the recent special issue of the IEEE Transactions on Medical Imaging.
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