New Smartglasses Allow Surgeons to See Cancer Cells

Posted by: Maxine Brimmer (3 years, 8 months ago)

The latest innovation in wearable technology may soon allow doctors to easily see tumors and cancerous cells during surgery, possibly lowering the rate of follow-up operations for cancer patients.

While it can be difficult for surgeons to find and remove all cancerous cells during a procedure, the smartglasses invented by a Washington University research team will make the cells appear bright blue on the headset. Lead by Samuel Achilefu, the research team created the custom software which can help surgeons to distinguish between healthy tissue and cancer.

This week, a medical team used the smartglasses for the first time during an actual surgery, though the device will still need much more refinement before it enters widespread medical use.  Although it is not a surefire weapon against cancer yet, Achilefu and his team are hopeful that their technology may one day totally eliminate the need for follow-up surgeries, which are common in cancer treatment.

A surgeon at Washington University plans to use the smartglasses again later this month, but it is unclear when and if the technology will become refined enough for a wider release.

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