Alder Hey Children’s Hospital located in Liverpool, United Kingdom, has teamed up with Microsoft in order to help doctors with surgical procedures.
The surgeons will use Microsoft’s Surface Hub which will help them share tests, medical images and patient charts with other medical professionals. Also, in the operating theatre they will be using the HoloLens mixed reality headset. The headset will provide them with accurate, up-to-date information about a patient while they are in surgery performing the operation and will create interactive 3D holograms in real time.
Rafael Guerrero, a cardiac surgeon at Alder Hey has explained the importance of being able to operate with aid from the HoloLens:
“Imaging a patient’s heart from the inside and from the outside is absolutely essential. I have to visualise that 3D view in my head in order to do this operation. You can display those images on a screen in the operating theatre sometimes, but it’s not easily accessible; and I can’t leave in the middle of an operation to go get more information about my patient. In many cases, the heart has already stopped in order for us to operate.
“Microsoft HoloLens and mixed reality will, in the future, enable me to have a patient’s scans in front of me while I’m doing the operation. If I can use technology to obtain that information, to see those images in front of me, that helps me tremendously and improves the outcome for my patient,” he went on to say.
Credit: Microsoft UK/ YouTube
The hospital is also working hand in hand with Black Marble, another Microsoft partner, to develop an app that will hold everything a surgeon might need to see in the operating theater. The app will use InkCanvas and InkToolbar, which will allow multiple people to write notes on the Surface Hub at the same time. Every note is time stamped, shows the author and it can be viewed during an operation, after having been previously uploaded onto the headset.
HoloLens, coupled up with a competent app, will most likely prove to be a tool that will make surgeons’ jobs easier and, hopefully, aid them in saving more lives than ever.