Fraunhofer Institute of Optronics, System Technologies and Image Exploitation IOSB



Context-sensitive assistance for a surgical team in an attentive operating room


Operations are stressful situations for both the patient and the surgical team. For the well-being of patients, it is necessary to keep the duration of an operation as short as possible to counteract complications such as infections or an increased blood loss. In recent years, assistive systems have been used to support the surgical team in stressful situations - for example, due to a sudden complication in the course of an operation. The practical use of supporting systems entails also some drawbacks. For example, the handling of the system devices puts a strain on the surgeon and his team parallel to their actual task. Furthermore, as non-sterile system components, the input devices (e.g. mouse) can increase the risk of infections.

Project goals

KonsensOP assist the surgical team only when support is needed. Before the operation, a machine-readable representation of the surgical workflow is loaded. Individually adapted to the specific tasks of each team member, KonsensOP accompanies the intervention on an attentive stand-by mode and is able to recognize deviations from the planed operation.

How it works

The surgical team is monitored via video and vital sensors, the surgical instruments are tracked via integrated pressure and acceleration sensors. The assistive system gathers and analyses all information about the current position, posture, gestures and viewing direction of all members of the surgical team. In case of complications, the assistance system will offer each individual team member an evidence-based, alternative workflow and support it with the appropriate visualizations and data. The surgeon continues to lead the intervention, because the interaction between him and the patient, as well as the other physicians, nurses and the auxiliary staff, is in the centre of action in the operating theatre.

Project parners

Project overview

Project title

KonsensOP - CONtext-SENSitive assistance for a surgical team in an attentive OPerating room

Official website (German version)