Laparoscopic surgeons at Stanford University Medical Center (SUMC) have a new toy to play with.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently approved a head-mounted remote control to assist in laparoscopy, and the device is being used at SUMC.

The device, called the FreeHand by Prosurgics, works very similarly to a Nintendo Wii game controller. Surgeons wear a head-mounted remote to control the camera inside a patient during surgery. While laparoscopic cameras are not new, controlling the camera through head movements is a new technique. Laparoscopic surgeons typically do not have a free hand; therefore, a second surgeon was often required to hold and maneuver the camera through verbal directions.

The FreeHand device uses an infrared beam to control the receiver. When the receiver is pointing in the right direction, the surgeon can step on a button to confirm and control the movement. Additionally, the camera can tilt in four directions (up, down, right and left) and zoom in and out.

For more information on the FreeHand laparoscopic camera and a video demonstration, follow this link:

“New Surgical Camera Works like Wii Controller”