The Microsoft HoloLens can allow surgeons to see portions of the brain not usually visible.
Brain surgery is one of the most difficult branches of surgery. The brain isn’t a transparent area and if surgery has to take place deep inside then the only options surgeons have is to peel off layers of brain mass.
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Sometimes surgeons simply have to make educated guesses but all of it makes brain surgery a dangerous endeavor.
Neurosurgeons at Duke may have come up with a way to make brain surgery a bit easier. According to the surgeons at Duke they are experimenting with a new technique which can reduce the number of blind brain surgeries.
The neurosurgeons are using Virtual Reality (VR) to guide them into the unseen places of the brain which cannot be touched excessively.
For instance the researchers used VR to insert a catheter into the brain so they can suck out pooled fluid from deep in the brain. Usually the vacuum needle would be inserted with the help of CT scans and precise measurements to areas of the brain which cannot be peeled off.
Using a Microsoft Hololens headset the surgeons were able to come up with 3D images derived from CT scans, which gave them real-time feedback on the progress of the catheter in the brain. The neurosurgeons working on this technique are; Andrew Cutler and Shervin Rahimpour.
Needless to say VR assisted surgery is still in its initial phases and may take many years before being used in an actual surgery setting but the procedure seems promising with many benefits.
According to Cutler with this method they do not have to look at screens since the images are directly overlaid on the patient and is definitely and improvement over the current OR systems.