Strategic Communication and Public Relations

An iPad in the OR: Exhibit from the German Cancer Research Center on the science exhibition ship “MS Wissenschaft”

No. 19 | 06/05/2014 | by Koh

When performing minimally invasive surgery, clinicians need to know precisely how to insert instruments into a target region without injuring nearby organs. SurgeryPad, an invention from the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), may help them do so in the future. Over the next five months, visitors to the science exhibition ship "MS Wissenschaft" will have a chance to try out the new software system for themselves. The floating science fair starts on May 6 in Berlin.

© Michael Müller, DKFZ

When planning a minimally invasive surgical procedure, physicians gain better spatial orientation into a patient's anatomy using a virtual system. A group of scientists headed by Michael Müller from the German Cancer Research Center (Deutsches Krebsforschungszentrum, DKFZ) has developed an application called SurgeryPad that facilitates this without the need for large diagnostic instruments: SurgeryPad runs on a tablet computer.

The method works like this: During surgery, a physician films the surface of a patient's body using the camera integrated into an iPad. SurgeryPad then superimposes these images with a virtual 3D model of the corresponding organs that has been reconstructed using a CT scan made prior to the operation. The system produces a virtual representation of the patient’s organ as seen from the exact point of view of the surgeon. This is made possible by colored reference markers attached to the skin of the patient. The SurgeryPad software uses their coordinates to determine the spatial orientation of the tablet computer and constructs a real-time, corresponding view of the inside of the body.

Starting on May 6, interested members of the public from all over Germany will have a chance to try out SurgeryPad for themselves on the exhibition ship "MS Wissenschaft" ("MS Science"). The theme of this year's exhibition inside the big cargo ship is "Digital Society." It presents more than 30 interactive exhibits demonstrating multiple uses of digital technology, with a particular focus on the role that science and research have played in their development. The exhibit will tour German rivers on board the “MS Wissenschaft” for five months.

Michael Müller, who developed SurgeryPad, gave a demonstration of the system to Federal Minister of Education and Research Prof. Johanna Wanka at the exhibition’s opening on May 6. "Minimally invasive surgical operations or biopsies are being used ever more widely,” says Müller, a specialist in medical informatics. “Systems such as SurgeryPad, which are based on augmented reality, support physicians’ spatial imagination and will help them perform these interventions more precisely and more gently in the future."

When and where will the “MS Wissenschaft” land? Click here for the tour plan:
http://www.ms-wissenschaft.de/tour.html

The German Cancer Research Center (Deutsches Krebsforschungszentrum, DKFZ) with its more than 3,000 employees is the largest biomedical research institution in Germany. More than 1,300 scientists at the DKFZ investigate how cancer develops, identify cancer risk factors and search for new strategies to prevent people from developing cancer. They are developing new methods to diagnose tumors more precisely and treat cancer patients more successfully. The DKFZ's Cancer Information Service (KID) provides patients, interested citizens and experts with individual answers to all questions on cancer.

Jointly with partners from the university hospitals, the DKFZ operates the National Center for Tumor Diseases (NCT) in Heidelberg and Dresden, and the Hopp Children's Tumour Center KiTZ in Heidelberg. In the German Consortium for Translational Cancer Research (DKTK), one of the six German Centers for Health Research, the DKFZ maintains translational centers at seven university partner locations. NCT and DKTK sites combine excellent university medicine with the high-profile research of the DKFZ. They contribute to the endeavor of transferring promising approaches from cancer research to the clinic and thus improving the chances of cancer patients.

The DKFZ is 90 percent financed by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research and 10 percent by the state of Baden-Württemberg. The DKFZ is a member of the Helmholtz Association of German Research Centers.

RSS-Feed

Subscribe to our RSS-Feed.

to top
powered by webEdition CMS