Autostereoscopic Three-Dimensional Viewer Evaluation Through Comparison With Conventional Interfaces in Laparoscopic Surgery

Silvestri, Michele; Simi, Massimiliano; Cavallotti, Carmela; Vatteroni, Monica; Ferrari, Vincenzo; Freschi, Cinzia; Valdastri, Pietro; Menciassi, Arianna; Dario, Paolo
September 2011
Surgical Innovation;Sep2011, Vol. 18 Issue 3, p223
Academic Journal
In the near future, it is likely that 3-dimensional (3D) surgical endoscopes will replace current 2D imaging systems given the rapid spreading of stereoscopy in the consumer market. In this evaluation study, an emerging technology, the autostereoscopic monitor, is compared with the visualization systems mainly used in laparoscopic surgery: a binocular visor, technically equivalent from the viewer’s point of view to the da Vinci 3D console, and a standard 2D monitor. A total of 16 physicians with no experience in 3D interfaces performed 5 different tasks, and the execution time and accuracy of the tasks were evaluated. Moreover, subjective preferences were recorded to qualitatively evaluate the different technologies at the end of each trial. This study demonstrated that the autostereoscopic display is equally effective as the binocular visor for both low- and high-complexity tasks and that it guarantees better performance in terms of execution time than the standard 2D monitor. Moreover, an unconventional task, included to provide the same conditions to the surgeons regardless of their experience, was performed 22% faster when using the autostereoscopic monitor than the binocular visor. However, the final questionnaires demonstrated that 60% of participants preferred the user-friendliness of the binocular visor. These results are greatly heartening because autostereoscopic technology is still in its early stages and offers potential improvement. As a consequence, the authors expect that the increasing interest in autostereoscopy could improve its friendliness in the future and allow the technology to be widely accepted in surgery.


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