Case Study:

Live 3D Surgery: Stereoscopic Surgery Training Trial



MATTU (Minimum Access Therapy Training Unit), the internationally recognised centre of excellence for teaching innovative laparoscopic surgical techniques, invited Inition and other vendors to show how 3D display and motion capture technology could be incorporated into surgical procedures to determine whether 3D training simulation could improve accuracy, safety and performance as well as the quality of surgery training.


Inition provided consultancy and equipment for the scope of the project including projection equipment, motion capture devices and technical expertise for two implementations – live stereoscopic broadcast of an operation via a stereoscopic endoscopic camera and a motion tracking demo to show how the tracking of a sergeon’s hands can be recorded for future analysis.

Live real surgery was performed and filmed in the Royal Surrey County Hospital Theatres and the feed was transmitted to a remote viewing room where other surgeons witnessed the operation in 3D wearing 3D glasses. Two 3D cameras captured the keyhole operation in 3D. Inition’s stereoscopic endoscopic camera provided the stereoscopic perspective from inside the patient’s body and a Panasonic AG-3DA1 camera was deployed externally. Both were integrated with an LG CF3D projector in the viewing room. Inition supplied two 3D monitors for the surgeon too. Wearing passive 3D glasses, he was able to view the output from the endoscopic camera and Panasonic camera just as the other students did whilst talking through his procedure via a wireless microphone.

In order to analyse the differences between stereoscopic laparoscopic surgery and regular surgery, lnition also recommended Ascension’s trakSTAR system which we are a reseller for. The technology was used to measure novice surgeons’ performance on stereo (3D) imaging systems in a simulated environment, providing insight into their exact hand movements.

We concluded that Ascension Technology would be perfect for MATTU’s application because it is extremely easy to use and offers great quality capture time and again,” said Jeff Ferguson, motion capture and tracking expert at Inition.


The results from the day indicated that, by a considerable margin, the addition of stereo cues improved surgery training and the results are being published as a paper which will be promoted as a new training system.