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Surgeons in cyberspace

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„Sphere – ein OP Szenario“, piu products, Essen, Germany


Thorsten Gratzki of the piu product design company has developed an operating room scenario, in which in the first phase the operator does not work on the patient, but on the patient’s 3-D data model with the help of virtual instruments. The concept differs from the current normality in operating rooms insofar as that it includes a comprehensive operation plan, an insertion of a complete simulation between operator and patient as well as novel surgical instruments. In this operating room of the future, the pre-operative phase requires at least the same or even more attention and effort than the operation itself. The patient’s model is based on comprehensive data collected with the help of different imaging technologies such as computer tomography, x-rays and magnetic resonance tomography.


Based on the collection and further patient data, a software called “Virtual Reality” module creates an anatomical model including the coordinates of the intervention. The condition of the affected organ, the individual steps of the operation, and the position of the surgical instruments are determined in this phase and a complete simulation is created. With instruments such as the “data glove” and the “3-D liquid crystal” glasses, via language and symbolic movement the surgeon transfers his data from his 3-D projection to remote-controlled instruments which are mounted flexibly on a pivoted tool tray in order to highly precisely treat the patient lying on the “work bench”.


A uniform user interface, a central computer system and the presence of experts which has been made easier by telemedicine shall guarantee safety and quality control. The complete technical structure should not be visible; the operating room should only consist of humans, end devices and the virtual world.


At the centre of all innovations and visionary technologies that are used still are – and this is essential – human beings with their knowledge and experience. It is them that control and coordinate the system. The aim is to use technology efficiently, thus emphasising the relationship between doctor and patient. 


“Many of the technologies necessary for this concept exist already; others are possible with today’s knowledge. Nevertheless, it has taken some imagination on behalf of the jury to comprehend this revolutionary approach. In short: With this scenario, piu products stand out as real visionaries,” says Deutschmann.

Overview of concepts:


Decoding the sense of smell

„Vom Riechrezeptor zum Biosensor“, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Lehrstuhl für Zellphysiologie, Bochum, Germany


Neck vertebrae fixation without screws

„Crano - eine Cervikalorthese“, Julia Hanisch and Timo Wurz, Hochschule für Gestaltung in Schwäbisch Gmünd, Germany


Operating brains quickly

„LAXAR OP-System“, Andrea Feuerabend and Friedemann Schreiber, Hochschule für Gestaltung Schwäbisch Gmünd, Germany


Natural contraception via skin reading

„ovu`love“, Wilddesign, Gelsenkirchen, Germany, and GEO-Design, Tokyo, Japan


Making cartilage grow and sponges disappear

„Innovatives 3D-Design von Biomaterialien für die Regenerative Medizin“, Matricel, Herzogenrath, Germany


Testing babies’ hearing

„OtoRead”, DESIGN/NORD, Denmark, and Interacoustics A/S, Denmark


Increased sensation with the lower leg prosthesis

„Otto Bock Harmony System“, Otto Bock Healthcare GmbH, Duderstadt, Germany


Memory aid for dementia sufferers

„Senso. My Personal Lifebook“, Pelin Celik and Pilotfish GmbH, Munich, Germany


Greater quality of life for pain patients

„Lockout System”, Ing. Erich Pfeiffer GmbH, Radolfzell, Germany, and item design & development, Ascheberg, Germany


Surgeons in cyberspace

„Sphere – ein OP Szenario“, piu products, Essen, Germany


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