3D visualization and augmented reality for surgery
So what coming out today could become the next great medtech disruptor? Here’s one educated guess: augmented reality for surgery.
In 2016, the Cleveland Clinic predicted that 3D visualization and augmented reality would be a top disruptor of 2017. The technology is now making its way into operating rooms.
For years, surgeons have relied on X-Rays, microscopes and other camera systems to get a visual idea of areas to operate on. As one of the top disruptors of healthcare, bringing augmented reality to operation rooms has allowed surgeons to get a clearer picture of exactly what they need to do while gaining a better anatomical and technical understanding of surgery than previously available.
Companies like Royal Philips are using augmented reality to help surgeons perform image-guided open and minimally-invasive spinal surgery. The system uses high-resolution optical panels attached to a flat panel X-ray detector to create 3D images of a patient’s spine. This creates a 3D augmented reality view of the patient’s anatomy to improve procedure planning and operation times while also improving surgical tool navigation and implant accuracy.
Researchers have also successfully used high-definition digital camera images to create a 3D image of facial surfaces and used computed tomography scans to get digital information about bones in the face to create 3D images for facial reconstruction surgery.
Medical school students have also used commercial virtual reality glasses to create an augmented reality training platform.