Augmented Reality in Urology

Image-guided surgical navigation and remotely controlled robotics are the main technologies for enabling minimally invasive surgery.

The vision of the surgery environment and the mobility in handling surgical tools are limited by the indirect and restricted access to the patient’s body.

The use of Augmented Reality (AR) in surgery improves the surgeon’s spatial perception of the surgical field to avoid unnecessary manipulations or inadvertent injuries to inner organs. Moreover, it allows the completion of the actual surgery in a timely fashion.

In this project, we work on the development of a software application able to visualize the 3D virtual model of prostate or kidney targeted by the surgical procedure and automatically overlay it over its real counterpart captured by the endoscope camera. We investigate the development of tracking techniques in real-time. The developed application is currently used and tested by the Urology unity of the San Luigi Hospital, in Orbassano (To) – Italy, and exploits the Tile-Pro visualization system of the Da Vinci surgical console.