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Augmented Reality For Medical Surgery

Posted by Dr Ash Dutta on 11 December 2018

The march of technology continues apace with the announcement of the Microsoft developed Hololens 510K system. Not only does the name sound like some exotic  technological device used in a science fiction film, but by being developed in conjunction with the company Novarad’s Opensight Augmented Reality System, the Hololens device acts like something out of Minority Report. 

Augmented reality has been gradually drifting into our lives thanks to the ever increasing power of computers and can be seen in most movie theaters and video games this season, but this version is totally different and literally ´cutting edge´. 

The Opensight system allows the use of two, three and four dimensional imagery to be superimposed on the bodies of patients allowing surgeons to see a clear real time projection of what would be expected to be seen during an operating theatre procedure. 

The Hololens system is used by Opensight to give the surgeon a unique experience allowing the combination of 3-Dimensional patient images on the actual patient’s body. The advantages are that the surgeon is still acutely aware of his physical surroundings while the technology overlays the patient´s bodily schematics without extraneous distractions. 

From this unique operating standpoint, it’s expected that if Oversight is used in surgery - it will improve diagnosis and accuracy during procedures because the surgeon will have both a visual and interactive ‘map’ of the patient before even the first incision is made. 

¨The technology is really transformative allowing both pre-operative imaging and augmented reality to improve precision, speed and safety of medical procedures” according to Dr. Wendell Gibby, Novarad CEO and the co-developer of Opensight. 

The very idea that such visual imagery can be achieved may sound like science fiction, but images published on Novarad’s website seem to back up these claims. Surgeons can conduct ‘test runs’ on the images without causing the patient trauma and can plan the best way to operate and avoid potential problems allowing more precise surgery. 

As with most powerful computer systems, Opensight allows for the provision of multiple users on headsets to consult and confer on the same augmented reality system. And, the Hololens system has the ability to be of use to trainees in a sort of ´virtual classroom´ allowing them to even perform virtual dissections on cadavers. 

The Novarad 3D process from Nova 3D+ products is one step closer to allowing interactive training for physicians, surgeons and students to operate and diagnose with complete safety and confidence of the patient.