Augmented or hybrid reality is a display technology that combines the real world with the virtual world; it permits digital images of preoperative planning information to be combined with the surgeon's view of the real world. Augmented reality (AR) can increase the surgeon's intraoperative vision by providing virtual transparency of the real patient and has been applied to a wide spectrum of orthopedic procedures, such as tumor resection, fracture fixation, arthroscopy, and component's alignment in total joint arthroplasty. We present a case of a male patient who presented with pain in the medial aspect of his left foot after he underwent an incomplete mass excision elsewhere where it turned out to be synovial sarcoma. Because the mass was small, impalpable, and deeply positioned beneath both the plantar and the medial plantar aponeuroses, it was impossible to preoperatively decide a plan for resection. We opted to use the aid of AR in the form of an application using the camera of a smartphone. We were able to excise the tumor with negative surgical margins. On 12-month follow-up, the patient is in complete remission and has optimal mobility and functionality of his foot. In conclusion, AR holds great potential for use in the future of orthopedic surgical oncology. We emphasize using it via a handheld device that we found to be optimal for planning resection of the small and relatively fixed tumor. Based on our literature review, this is the first case describing the surgical planning in resecting an impalpable synovial sarcoma of the foot using AR technology.
Keywords: augmented reality handheld devices orthopedic oncology soft tissue sarcoma tumor resection