13.01.2016 change 13.01.2016

Augmented reality can be useful in cardiology

Reconstruction of the coronary arteries in 3D. Source: ICM University of Warsaw Reconstruction of the coronary arteries in 3D. Source: ICM University of Warsaw

Researchers from Warsaw have developed an innovative method of using augmented reality glasses Google Glass in supporting interventional cardiac procedures.

The work focused on the use of augmented reality glasses Google Glass to assist in chronic coronary artery occlusion opening procedures. Occlusion is a blockage of a blood vessel.

The solution was developed as a result of collaboration of the Laboratory of Visual Analysis ICM UW headed by Bartosz Borucki and the Institute of Cardiology in Warsaw. Representatives of ICM UW reported on the study in release sent to PAP.

Researchers from the two centres have developed methods of visualizing and presenting images for the needs of surgical procedures. The ICM also designed and developed the software for Google Glass that supports doctors during the operation.

Classic occlusion opening procedure is planned on the basis of CT scan with contrast and three-dimensional reconstruction of the coronary arteries. Then, the cardiologist performs the procedure using angiography, or 2D imaging. The doctor must remember the image in three dimensions and to try to match it to the 2D image he sees. This procedure may be enhanced by using an additional screen showing a 3D reconstruction prepared earlier.

Using Google Glass allows to transfer 3D image directly before the eyes of the doctor, so that the coordination of the angiography 2D image and the 3D image viewed on Google Glass is much easier. In addition, the operator can control the displayed image without contact, using voice and gestures, adequately to the current angiography projection.

The next step in the application of this solution will be enabling the physician to watch a fully dynamic 3D image, not only adjusted in real time to the angiographic projection, but also showing the current position of the catheter in the three-dimensional system of coronary arteries.

The procedure performed at the Institute of Cardiology in May 2015 was described in an article published in the November issue of the "Canadian Journal of Cardiology".

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