In Blog Post, Guest Post

AV over IP in the Operating Room

The modern surgical operating room has evolved into a significant audio-video system. In addition to robotic surgery and endoscopy, where surgery is performed using a tiny camera inserted into the patient’s body, surgical teams need to share vital imaging systems to safely operate. These imaging devices can be c-arms for live x-rays, ultrasound scanners for soft tissue, and monitoring systems such as haemodynamics, essential for heart surgery.

How is the use of AV in the operating room evolving? And what shifts are occurring in the underlying infrastructure to support this evolution?

Justin Kennington, President, SDVoE Alliance, welcomed guest Colin Dobbyne, Consultant, Big Blue Solutions to discuss and she some light on these questions. Colin explained that we are currently at the stage of surgery 3.0 with silicon chips-based appliances, cameras, and devices and quickly evolving to the future with surgery 4.0 where the operating room is connected. AV has rapidly expanded in use in the operating room over the last 10 to 15 year. This has been driven by miniaturization, HD, and now 4K and 3D imaging; in the future there will be imaging devices involved in every surgery. This will provide a great benefit in improving patient outcomes but will come with the challenge of managing all the data captured. How will you store, manage, and distribute this information, not to mention consider all the security aspects of this data collection? This demands the need for a robust ecosystem that maintains the quality of the images as well as the ability to manage all the data in a secure manner.

AV in the operating room also demands high-end equipment. The cameras that are being used are broadcast quality and require high-quality screens to view the images that are being capture. With so  many imaging modalities in the OR—live camera, radiogram, overview camera, sonogram, etc.—the surgery staff will often want to display 4 different images on a screen which demands high definition and a large format screen.

Justin wondered, “What are the benefits to the surgeon—to the operating room environment—of AV over IP instead of a matrix switch?” There are lots of stakeholders involve in an efficient OR so if we are just talking about the surgeon, they want to see the best possible image with the minimal amount of latency. The advantages beyond that primary use case, include other capabilities such as sending images down the hall to a seminar room, sending them over the LAN and storing data efficiently. Some of the technology may also help with electrical safety applications for example fiber optic will not transfer any dangerous current to somewhere you do not want it. Colin’s opinion of adoption of AV over IP in the OR environment is that it is being driven by the belief that eventually everything will be over IP so why not move our technology to that now and reap the benefits as we use the technology and its capabilities.

SDVoE technology has two critical features that are required for OR AV solutions: lossless video transmission and zero latency, without those crucial factors AV technology is not even in the game.

SDVoE sits head and shoulders above other AV-over-IP solutions for features above and beyond the video quality. It includes USB extension as well as RS-232, infrared, and audio controls. Audio options include independent audio or split from the video, as well as the ability to route it to various decoders and encoders. This enables a palette of audio and video controls; features that make SDVoE incredibly flexible allowing the end user to create any type of solution that is needed in the OR.

News about Video in the OR

Check out some recent news around video in the operating room:


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