How Augmented Reality Will Make Surgery Safer

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January 29, 2019

Most significant medical advances and innovations of the past years have been diagnostic imaging: computerized tomography-CT, magnetic resonance, ultrasonography not forgetting mammography. Currently, most surgery involves some scanning before incision. For emergencies, medical surgeons have the CT or ultrasound to guide the procedure. Imaging is carried out in real time in point-of-care during small and big practices.

Visual data is shown on 3D flat screen, the displays where the health surgeons look away from the patient with their hands while taking the operations. Also, the images aren’t displayed from the viewing angle, but from the imaging device. The medical doctor must use imagination skills to psychologically project the photos and understand while they’re doing the procedures. Different forms of visual are shown partly, and the surgeons have additional undeviating attention to multiple mentally fusing image forms like the CT and angiography into a logical structure of the client.

Augmented reality technology that superimposes digital information from the real world changes all this. In the envisioned application the doctor using augmented reality headset like Microsoft’s HoloLens will be able to observe data directly and digital images overlaid on her field of view. The medical doctor need not look opposite from the patient to several various displays to interpret and gather this information.

Augmented realty’s ability to concurrently and parallel display patient’s information and another imaging part could decrease medical errors and save lives. This is a procedure done outside the operation room. The operation room is the safest place in the hospital where a single patient is attended to by a team of 5 to 9 dedicated nurses and doctors. Every patient has pre-operative imaging, and the process is diligently mapped. Anesthesiologists administer pain controlling drugs; monitor the patient’s physiology and life-saving medication. It is during these procedures that the patients are at risk and where AR provides excellent benefits.

In tracking multiple data displays and images, it is easy to miss critical cues for the patient’s status. Single AR display integrates patient’s data and all imaging, allowing the surgeon to keep their eyes on the patient hence improving quality, reducing cost and increasing safety by reducing procedure-related complications.

The Video Optical See-Through Augmented System (VOSTAR) amounted display system that superimposes the patient’s imaging diagnostic in a 3D unison with their anatomy. It also presents a patient’s medical information such as body temperature, heart rate, breathing rate, and blood rates, quickly into the surgeon’s field of vision in an attempt to increase accuracy by concentrating on the operation and reducing time.

Although AR for surgical procedures has been the talk in industrial and academic research since the 1990s a tool interlinking surgeon’s subjective perception with patients information hasn’t been widely implemented.

Latest advances of photonics components such as the high-luminous micro display and LED optical waveguide has been critical in turning what was science fiction into reality. The chief goal of AR in medicine is not just to reduce surgery time but also cost involved and time spent under anesthetic during operation. You are saving 20 minutes every three hours of surgery and a guarantee of actual intervention.

Making surgeries less painful and invasive: at times surgeons peer inside the human body to have a look at the state of critical organs. But with the help of augmented reality, medical consultants are using computerized tomography technology coupled with magnetic imaging scanners to create a real like three-dimensional image of the patient's organs. The images are analyzed by the use of HoloLens to look at the virtual picture of the client's organs and come up with important decisions.

Innovations in Theatre

With AR delivered through technologies such as Google Glass, surgeons receive unprecedented real-time insight on operational procedures. The technology exists to create virtual overlay across the medical practitioner’s real-world view, guiding them through the surgery steps for patient’s safety and enhanced performance.

Credits to 3D modeling, AR can help localize tumors, giving the surgeon X-ray vision without coming in contact with the harmful radiation. Any field of anatomy can be located, modeled and high lightened with point accuracy. The digital technology allows the surgeon to capture mid-procedure pictures that will be added to patients medical records.

Training with AR

Surgery is a highly sophisticated profession. Taking a lot of practice and learning in a range of procedures to be competent- and that is expensive.

In the past surgical training would take place in medical theatres, with students given running commentary and briefs of procedures as surgeons worked. This is vanishing with time. The demand for the availability of surgeon’s time and operating theatres are too high.

To handle these companies have created thousands of training simulations for portable devices that allow students to follow the surgical procedures keenly. Thanks to AR advent. The augmented reality has made simulations far more authentic, engaging and interactive, which is excellent for learning the outcome.

AR is making it faster, cheaper and more comfortable for trainees to learn and field surgeons to practice their procedures before the operation. This is great for patient’s safety.

The AR of Sterilization

Sterilization challenges are using when it comes to utilizing AR technologies in theatre. Headsets are a source of contamination and unresponsive to anti-microbial scrub down. Gesture tracking, voice control, and foot pedals are the potential options to square the circle. A simple remote control crowned in a sterile bag would work.

Augmented reality is assisting surgeons in cardiovascular procedures and replacing the aortic and repairing of the hearts mitral valve.

In the future, the use of AR in the medical field is only going to grow. We’re confident this fantastic technology is going to make sophisticated surgeries simple, precise and less painful for patients. The application of AR is on board, but it is just the beginning. None can predict the feature, but one sure thing is up for exciting times ahead with AR technology. With the widespread adoption of AR among trainees and surgeons, the future of surgery is more efficient and safer than ever before.

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