New augmented reality telementoring system offers new surgical possibilities

Engineering

Surgeons could be provided with remote assistance and oversight via a new augmented reality telementoring system created in the US.

Researchers at Purdue University and the Indiana University School of Medicine have produced the System for Telementoring with Augmented Reality (STAR), which harnesses various technologies, such as transparent displays and sensors.

“US researchers have developed a new augmented reality telementoring system that can provide surgeons with remote assistance.“

Traditional telementoring systems involve surgeons receiving guidance remotely from an expert by shifting their focus to a nearby telestrator device, thus diverting attention from the operating table.

This new system uses a transparent display placed in between the surgeon and the operating field, allowing mentor annotations and illustrations to appear directly in the field of view of the surgeon.

Gerardo Gomez, a professor of surgery at the Indiana University School of Medicine, said: "Optimal surgery and trauma treatment integrates different surgical skills frequently unavailable in rural and field hospitals, and telementoring can provide the missing expertise."

The device can also be useful in providing effective support to surgeons on the battlefield from specialists located thousands of miles away.

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