Robotic telesurgery: a real-world comparison of ground- and satellite-based internet performance

Authors

  • R. Rayman,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Medical Biophysics, University of Western Ontario, London, Ontario, Canada
    2. CSTAR (Canadian Surgical Technologies & Advanced Robotics), London Health Sciences Centre, London, Ontario, Canada
    • London Health Sciences Centre, Division of Surgery, 339 Windermere Road, London, Ontario, Canada N6A 5A5.
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  • K. Croome,

    1. CSTAR (Canadian Surgical Technologies & Advanced Robotics), London Health Sciences Centre, London, Ontario, Canada
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  • N. Galbraith,

    1. CSTAR (Canadian Surgical Technologies & Advanced Robotics), London Health Sciences Centre, London, Ontario, Canada
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  • R. McClure,

    1. CSTAR (Canadian Surgical Technologies & Advanced Robotics), London Health Sciences Centre, London, Ontario, Canada
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  • R. Morady,

    1. CSTAR (Canadian Surgical Technologies & Advanced Robotics), London Health Sciences Centre, London, Ontario, Canada
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  • S. Peterson,

    1. CSTAR (Canadian Surgical Technologies & Advanced Robotics), London Health Sciences Centre, London, Ontario, Canada
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  • S. Smith,

    1. CSTAR (Canadian Surgical Technologies & Advanced Robotics), London Health Sciences Centre, London, Ontario, Canada
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  • V. Subotic,

    1. CSTAR (Canadian Surgical Technologies & Advanced Robotics), London Health Sciences Centre, London, Ontario, Canada
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  • A. Van Wynsberghe,

    1. CSTAR (Canadian Surgical Technologies & Advanced Robotics), London Health Sciences Centre, London, Ontario, Canada
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  • R. Patel,

    1. CSTAR (Canadian Surgical Technologies & Advanced Robotics), London Health Sciences Centre, London, Ontario, Canada
    2. Department of Electrical Engineering, University of Western Ontario, London, Ontario, Canada
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  • S. Primak

    1. Department of Medical Biophysics, University of Western Ontario, London, Ontario, Canada
    2. CSTAR (Canadian Surgical Technologies & Advanced Robotics), London Health Sciences Centre, London, Ontario, Canada
    3. Department of Electrical Engineering, University of Western Ontario, London, Ontario, Canada
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Abstract

Background

Telesurgery was performed with ground vs. satellite networks, and differing satellite bandwidths.

Methods

The networks were compared during internal mammary artery (LIMA) dissection in pigs (n = 8). Length of LIMA dissected and surgical quality (five-point scale) were recorded. Also, satellite bandwidth was decreased (n = 7) to determine a limit for telesurgery.

Results

No significant differences existed in LIMA dissection during the ground (4.3 ± 0.5 cm) and satellite phases (5.4 ± 1.1 cm; p > 0.05) or in quality of surgery, although latency on satellite was 10 times greater (55 vs. 600 ms). With decreasing satellite bandwidth, surgery was not possible below 3 Mb/s, and quality of surgery was significantly decreased comparing 9 Mb/s (4.38 ± 0.66/5) to 3Mb/s (4.10 ± 0.80/5; p < 0.05).

Conclusions

Satellite communication is a viable telesurgical modality. Satellite bandwidth should be above 5 Mb/s during telesurgery if used primarily or as back-up. Copyright © 2007 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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