How Augmented reality could change surgery?


There are two major facts:

  1. 70%  of the world’s population (5 billions people) lack access to safe surgery care.
  2. The information age: The fourth epoch of technological advancement.

So How number 2 will help to diminish number 1 intensity ?

The information age

According to the theories of human social development, we’re now living through the fourth epoch of technological advancement: the Information Age.

Connectivity through digital technology is a modern miracle, that has broken down barriers of time and space which separate people,and it’s created a condition for an age where information, ideas can be shared freely ( at a certain degree!)

But are these great accomplishments in digital technology really the endgame
in terms of what can be achieved?

WHO’s Lancet Commission

According to the WHO’s Lancet Commission,  five billion people around the world lack access to safe surgical care,they can’t even access simple surgical procedures as and when they need them.

Sierra Leone

It’s a country of six million people, where a recent study showed that there are only 10 qualified surgeons, That’s one surgeon for every 600,000 people.



If there’s a patient that needs an operation, and there isn’t a surgeon available,you’re left with some really difficult choices: to wait, to travel, or not to have an operation at all.

Today solution

digital communications technology has the power to do so much more than just to allow us to shop online, to connect through social media platforms and to stay up to date. It has the power to help us solve some of the key issues that we face, like lack of access to vital surgical services

The history of surgery is filled with breakthroughs, in how science and technology
was able to help the surgeons of the day face their greatest challenges.If we go back several hundred years,an understanding of microbiology led to the development
of antiseptic techniques,which played a big role in making sure patients were able
to stay alive postsurgery.

Fast-forward a few hundred years, we developed keyhole or arthroscopic surgery which combines video technology and precision instruments to make surgery less invasive.

More recently robotic surgery has emerged, what robotics brings to surgery
is much like modern automated machinery: ultraprecision! the ability to carry out procedures at the tiniest scales, with a degree of accuracy that even surpasses the human hand. But robotic surgery also introduced something else to surgery: the idea that a surgeon doesn’t actually have to be standing at the patient’s bedside to deliver care, that he could be looking at a screen and instructing a robot through a computer. This is called remote surgery.

But,for sure,  Not every one could bring a million-dollar robot to provide remote surgery, so , a team of designers, engineers and surgers  find solutions that solve these answers
in a cost-effective and scalable way, all you needed was a phone, a tablet, or a computer, an internet connection, a confident colleague on the ground, and one magic ingredient: an augmented reality collaboration software (proximie software).

Using this augmented reality collaboration software,an expert surgeon
can now virtually transport himself into any clinical setting simply by using his phone
or tablet or computer,and he can visually and practically interact in an operation from start to finish, guiding and mentoring a local doctor through the procedure step by step.

Let see those pictures from a keyhole surgery of the knee,where a surgey doctor standing with her laptop, a simple webcam and the augmented reality collaboration software.



According to Nadine Hachach-Haram, a surgery doctor “We’re so used to using digital technology to communicate through voice and text and video, but augmented reality
can do something so much deeper.It allows two people to virtually interact in a way that mimics
how they would collaborate in person. Being able to show someone what you want to do, to illustrate and demonstrate and gesture, is so much more powerful than just telling them. And it can make for such a great learning tool, because we learn better through direct experience.”

 Dr. Ghassan Abu-Sitta, Head of Plastic Surgery at the American University of Beirut Medical Center has  used the software to lead two operations in the Gaza from Beirut.


The beauty is that it breaks boundaries.It transcends all technological difficulties. It connects people. It democratizes access.Wi-Fi and mobile technology
are growing rapidly, and they should play a role in boosting surgical provision.
Of course, it still got a long way before we can solve the problem of getting surgery to five billion people, and unfortunately, some people still don’t have access to internet.

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Inspired from Ted talks  Nadine Hachach-Haram





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