How LEDs are eliminating mistakes in the operating room (MAGAZINE)


Date: 21-06-2017

Light, liver, and the pursuit of happiness: Surgeons in Scandinavia swear that Chromaviso's tunable color system helps them see better, improves results, and sends everyone home in a better frame of mind, as MARK HALPER discovers.


One word that no one wants to hear in the operating room is "mistake." Yet, like anyone else, surgeons have good days in the office and they have bad ones. If they can't see inside their patients properly, for example, slip-ups can happen. Ouch.


Moral of the story: Make sure the lighting is good.


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That is exactly what is happening across Scandinavia and other Nordic countries, where some 90 hospitals have modernized more than 500 endoscopic and related surgery and examination rooms with tunable, colored LED lighting. Doctors, nurses, and clinicians swear it has not only improved their ability to see anatomical details, but that it has also boosted their alertness and reduced their stress levels.


Most endoscopic surgeons around the world function in relative darkness, as the hospitals in Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Greenland, and the Faroe Islands used to do. For a quick review of Endoscopy 101: Endoscopic procedures entail inserting tubes through the mouth and other natural openings, or through keyhole incisions, when the operation goes by associated names such as laparoscopy. Surgeons and other professionals manipulate those tubes from outside the body. They see what they are doing on the inside by looking at video monitors displaying images sent by tiny cameras mounted on the tubes.