Natural 3D Vision for Surgery  
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About Us

3D Surgical has developed intellectual property leading to an innovative 3D vision system that makes minimally invasive (keyhole) surgery more accurate, safer and easier to use.  This low cost 3D visualisation technology has the potential to supersede conventional 2D systems and will enable further advances in keyhole surgical techniques.
Keyhole surgery (laparoscopy) has already transformed the way that surgery is performed.  More than 50% of surgical procedures in the US are now performed using minimally invasive techniques.  According to a variety of market surveys, the overall keyhole surgery market was $8.4 billion in 2008 for the US alone, and is expected to grow to $19.8bn by 2013.  The visualisation segment (which is relevant to 3D Surgical) was $1.4bn in 2008 and is forecast to grow to $1.8bn by 2013.
In contrast to the longer hospital stays and extended recovery times associated with open surgery, keyhole surgery enables surgeons to treat patients much less invasively, it speeds up recovery and, very importantly, it reduces the cost to the healthcare system.
Despite initial advances, keyhole surgery has hit a technological barrier because conventional laparoscopy uses a single camera and is therefore two dimensional (2D). This denies surgeons the vital depth perception they need to carry out intricate operations efficiently and quickly.  Think of trying to thread a needle with one eye closed, and you’ll have some idea of the constraints that a laparoscopic surgeon currently faces.  This limits the range of procedures that can be carried out “though the keyhole”.  Consequently, many operations that could benefit from the technique are still carried out by open surgery.
Increasingly guidance from healthcare policy setters (e.g. NICE in the UK) and funders (e.g. HMOs in US) is recognizing the benefits of laparoscopy in terms of:
Shorter patient recovery times
Shorter hospital stays
Cost effectiveness

The widespread introduction of 3D visualization is seen by many as crucial if keyhole surgery is to advance further.  3D Surgical’s technology will enable future developments such as NOTES, LESS, Bariatric Surgery and non-bypass cardiac surgery, by providing surgeons with the ability to visualize their operations in 3D.

3D Surgical has developed a prototype 3D laparoscope system. Early clinical and laboratory assessments have shown increased procedural accuracy.  The company’s prototype system was used in clinical practice at St Mary’s Hospital, London by surgeons including Professor Ara Darzi (now Health Minister, Lord Darzi) and at the John Radcliffe Infirmary in Oxford. In a trial by 12 surgeons, results showed that 3D was twice as effective as 2D.  Both complex and simple tasks were completed with 40-49% fewer errors and 15-25% faster with an improvement of efficiency of over 50%.  Compared with previous generations of 3D laparoscopy systems (which did not gain market acceptance), surgeons do not have to wear cumbersome headgear and experience no eye-strain or headaches due to the company’s patent-protected flicker-free monitor.

3D Surgical has partnered with Plextek LImited, a high technology engineering company, to develop and commercialise its products.