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KARL STORZ New Telepresence Technology Highlight of Live Surgical Demonstration at AAGL Annual Meeting

January 11, 2012 | Hogan Keyser

Landmark Event Marks First Use of the VisitOR1(R) Technology to Enable Surgeon's Live Interaction to Support Training of More Than 1,200 Attendees

EL SEGUNDO, Calif., Jan 11, 2012 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- KARL STORZ Endoscopy-America, Inc., a leader in endoscopy and operating room integration solutions, is pleased to announce that its new VisitOR1(R) telepresence technology was a key element in a landmark educational presentation at the American Association of Gynecologic Laparoscopists (AAGL) 40th Global Congress of Minimally Invasive Gynecology. The VisitOR1(R) system combines the KARL STORZ OR1(R) Operating Room Integration System with remote presence telemedicine solutions to give surgeons and other medical professionals seamless, live connectivity and interaction with surgeons in operating rooms, critical care units and emergency rooms from locations outside those facilities, and even outside the hospital.

During a live demonstration on November 8, 2011, a live surgical procedure being performed at Columbia St. Mary's Hospital in Milwaukee was linked using innovative remote presence technology via high-speed Internet connection to over 1,200 participants who were able to view the procedure from a ballroom at the Westin-Diplomat Hotel in Hollywood, Florida. This event is the first time this type of technology has been used to train and educate a group of this size.

The VisitOR1(R) System includes a unit in the OR installed either on a cart as a portable device or on a boom arm above the surgical field and linked by high-speed Internet to a remotely located laptop computer that functions as a viewing and control station. The laptop allows surgeons to "project" their presence into the OR during live surgeries, viewing the surgical procedure and even interacting with the OR team. The viewer is able to remotely rotate and control the visual perspective of the VisitOR1(R) unit above the OR table, and can use a laser pointer as a visual aid to communication. The result is that surgeons using the laptop station can experience an immersive and collaborative experience, as they observe complex cases and interact with those in the OR. More importantly, the technology provides a tool for sharing knowledge, and for training and education.

"AAGL, which hosted the educational session, has always been supportive of progressive educational initiatives as well as instrumental in advancing technology solutions to enhance the quality of gynecological care," said Dr. Frank Loffer, Executive Director of AAGL. He added, "Those who were not able to see the demonstration live can still access a video of the event that will be posted on the organization's SurgeryU website." The website is .

During the recent demonstration, Dr. Grace M. Janik, MD, Gynecology & Women's Reproductive Medicine at Columbia St. Mary's Hospital in Milwaukee and former AAGL President, led the team that performed the surgical procedure, a laparoscopic peritoneal resection of extensive endometriosis. The OR team used a number of KARL STORZ technologies during the procedure, including Image 1(R) FULL HD video technology, which provides clinical images of exceptional quality.

On the stage at the hotel was Dr. Andrew I. Brill, MD, Director, Minimally Invasive Gynecologic Surgery Program, California Pacific Medical Center in San Francisco and former AAGL President, who used the laptop viewing station, which was linked to a screen showing the surgery. "The energy was reminiscent of Steven Jobs introducing ground-breaking technology to an audience of worldwide media. The VisitOR1 technology enabled me to communicate with Dr. Janik in real time," said Dr. Brill. "Interacting with participants in the ballroom as well as the surgical team in the OR, I was able to use the VisitOR1's telestration feature to strengthen instruction by highlighting areas of captured images for explanation, education, elucidation and discussion. The laser pointer also proved quite useful as an interactive tool to aid communication with the OR team."

In addition, Dr. Brill captured still digital images and video sequences during the live procedure, then played back recorded clips to attendees to demonstrate various educational points and to show a before and after comparison for participants.

The event enabled the AAGL participants to experience first-hand the potential advantages of telepresence capabilities can offer in the OR. "This event offered a remarkable experience, demonstrating the tremendous long-term value that this remote presence solution can offer for training and sharing complex surgical techniques," said Dr. Janik. "The ability to provide a real-time link, virtually without regard to distance, between surgeons in the OR and those interested in learning new and emerging techniques has great potential to help expand and improve surgical care in many parts of the world," she added.


KARL STORZ Endoscopy-America, Inc., is an affiliate of KARL STORZ GmbH & Co. KG, an international leader for more than 65 years in reusable endoscope technology, encompassing all endoscopic specialties. Based in Tuttlingen, Germany, KARL STORZ GmbH & Co. KG is a family-owned company that designs, engineers, manufactures, and markets all its products with an emphasis on visionary design, precision craftsmanship and clinical effectiveness. VisitOR1(R) technology is the result of a collaborative relationship between KARL STORZ and InTouch Health(R) to develop solutions that enable surgeons in different geographic locations to perform state-of-the-art surgical mentoring, providing a valuable physician training and collaboration tool. For more information, call (800) 421-0837 or visit the company's Web site at .

About AAGL and SurgeryU

The AAGL vision is to serve women by advancing the safest and most efficacious diagnostic and therapeutic techniques that provide less invasive treatments for gynecologic conditions through integration of clinical practice, research, innovation, and dialogue. The AAGL is the first and largest organization in the world dedicated to gynecologic endoscopic surgery. Founded in 1971, AAGL works to advance the safest and most efficacious diagnostic and therapeutic techniques that afford less invasive treatments for gynecologic conditions through the integration of clinical practice, research, innovation, and dialogue. For the past 36 years, the organization has educated the world's finest surgeons while improving the lives of women everywhere. This global commitment to women's health care is embodied in their continuing medical education of physicians and professionals to further promote the well-documented high standards of minimally invasive gynecologic surgery. For more information, visit .

SurgeryU is AAGL's interactive media journal and video library, featuring hundreds of streaming videos that demonstrate cutting edge techniques in MIGS. SurgeryU streams the world's largest international surgical video library in every field of minimally invasive gynecologic surgery. Our library includes over 900 videos and depicts the works of its renowned faculty and AAGL members. Visit .

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