Doctor performs world's first 5G surgery
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Next-generation wireless technology is taking the medical world a crucial step closer to robots performing remotely-controlled surgery, a doctor in Spain said Feb 27 after carrying out the world's first 5G-powered telementored operation.

Doctors have telementored surgeries in the past using wireless networks but blazing fast 5G increases image quality and definition which are crucial for medical teams to take decisions with as much information, and as few mistakes, as possible.

"This is a first step to achieve our dream, which is to make remote operations in the near future," said Doctor Antonio de Lacy, after providing real-time guidance via a 5G video link from a Barcelona congress centre to a surgical team which operated on a patient with an intestinal tumour about five kilometres away at the Hospital Clinic.

5G greatly reduces latency - the time it takes to get a response to information sent - of wireless networks so images and data is relayed almost instantly.

De Lacy, the head of the hospital's gastrointestinal surgery service, used his finger to draw on a screen an area of the intestine where nerves are located and instructed the team how to navigate the surgery.

The demonstration was part of the Mobile World Congress, the mobile industry's biggest annual global event, which is being held in the Mediterranean coastal city this week.

During the operation, the 5G connection had a lag time of just 0.01 seconds, compared to the 0.27-second latency period with the 4G wireless networks which currently predominate in developing nations.

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Mar 1, 2019Like