Wearing a futuristic headset that allowed him to see both a 3D hologram and his patient’s body, Dr Travis Falconer made surgical history in Western Australia.
The Hollywood Private Hospital specialist shoulder and elbow surgeon became the first in the state to perform a procedure using the HoloLens mixed-reality system.
Dr Falconer said he was proud to be selected by medical technology company Stryker to trial the equipment in October 2022.
“I think this is just the start of what’s to come regarding pre-operative planning, the use of navigation, mixed reality and the introduction of robotic surgery into the upper limb,” he said.
Wearing the headset during a shoulder replacement operation, Dr Falconer was able to see a 3D hologram of the surgical plan over the patient’s anatomy in real time.
As well as using the planning software and referring to data analysis during the procedure, he could interact with the holographic objects via hand gestures and voice commands.
The Perth hospital’s Director of Medical Services, John Maxwell, said mixed-reality technology was an increasingly popular tool in operating rooms across the globe.
The new device allows surgeons to access computer-based solutions in real time, and remotely interact with colleagues located outside the theatre.
“It offers so much potential in the future, such as using artificial intelligence and case planning optimisation,” Dr Maxwell said.
“Our priority at Hollywood is to offer the latest technology and techniques to our patients for the best possible health outcomes.”
Read more: Mixed reality takes surgery into the future