"Video is the most demanding portion of the information being transmitted during telesurgery, and so it is very important that we have a high-performance encoding/decoding solution capable of delivering high-quality video at high speeds", stated Dr. Reiza Rayman, president of Titan Medical Inc. "The low-latency video encoded by HaiVision's MAKO-HD plays a key role in the success of this model, which gives surgeons extraordinary new capabilities and promises to increase access to specialized care while reducing associated transportation costs."
Telesurgery is the performance of robotic surgery over a long-distance communications link, and Titan Medical has created a prototype that can switch from local to remote control, providing visual feedback through dual HD video signals. The speed at which video is transmitted determines the speed with which the surgeon can manipulate the console and see the reaction of instruments in the stereoscopic video viewer. Dr. Reiza's research shows that the surgeon's ability to perform surgical tasks accurately begins to decrease when video latency reaches the range of 300 to 500 milliseconds.
To simulate long-distance intercity delivery, the team will send video and data over a network spanning varying long distances and back to the Bell lab. During the test at Bell, Dr. Reiza and his colleagues expect HaiVision's MAKO-HD to deliver video with latency under 200 milliseconds.
The hai1000 TelePresence codec system delivers the highly efficient MPEG-4 AVC / H.264 video compression standard at unsurpassed levels, enabling communication of high-resolution HD - up to 1080p - or SD video and super wideband audio across IP networks at bandwidths anywhere from 256 kbps to 10 Mbps. The MAKO-HD "zero latency" codec from HaiVision is the highest-performance H.264 codec available for HD, supporting up to 1080p resolution and an imperceptible 70 millisecond end-to-end latency.
"Telecommunications is a huge toolset in the delivery of modern health care and, more specifically, in getting the right information to right decision point", stated Ron Brown, at Bell's Centre for Healthcare Innovation. "Titan Medical's Amadeus and HaiVision's MAKO-HD codec both offer revolutionary capabilities that enable health care providers to leverage modern telecommunications networks to provide a higher quality of patient care - and to lower the delivery cost of that care."
Bell created the initial concept design for the network portion of the test and identified HaiVision as being most capable of supplying the high-performance codec required. As part of the test, the team from Titan Medical and Bell will experiment with video quality in order to define the minimum acceptable bandwidth use, and thus the minimum transmission costs, for this telesurgery model.
Amadeus represents the first next-generation robotic surgery device that will be telesurgery-capable. The four-armed surgical system will initially be used to enable surgeons to train other surgeons over dedicated networks. As the procedural type and volume increase, the Titan Medical system will enable health care centres to provide a greater number of patients better access to a greater number of expert surgeons.
Titan Medical Inc. is a Canadian public company focused on the development and commercialization of robotic surgical technologies. The company is currently developing Amadeus, a next-generation four-armed robotic surgical system, with the objective of enabling surgeons to remotely manipulate surgical instruments. Robotic surgery has developed over the past 10 years into a proven and growing method of treatment. The global robotic surgical market size is currently estimated to be $3,4 billion with potential for placement of 6000 robotic surgical systems. The company is researching and developing innovative technologies to empower surgeons to use robots in the operating room of the future.
Based in Montréal, Canada, HaiVision Systems Inc. is a private company and a world expert in delivering the most advanced video networking technology. HaiVision's products are deployed worldwide within the foremost telepresence suites and boardrooms, in health care facilities for video collaboration and training, in education facilities for continuous presence distance education and remote learning, and within broadcast facilities for remote interviews, IPTV, and content distribution. More company news is available in the VMW June 2007 article HaiVision hai1000 used by NASA for advanced medical procedures on NEEMO 12.
Bell is Canada's largest communications company, providing consumers with solutions to all their communications needs, including telephone services, wireless communications, high-speed Internet, digital television, and voice over IP. Bell also offers integrated information and communications technology (ICT) services to businesses and governments and is the Virtual Chief Information Officer (VCIO) to small and medium businesses (SMBs). Bell delivers health care solutions to the Canadian Health Care market through the Bell Health, Centre for Healthcare Innovation. Bell is proud to be a Premier National Partner and the exclusive Telecommunications Partner to the Vancouver 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games. Bell is wholly owned by BCE Inc. More news about Titan Medical and Bell Canada is available in the VMW December 2008 article Titan Medical Inc. to set up telesurgery collaboration with Bell Canada.