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Sony Sells a new 3D Head Mounted Display to Japanese Surgeons

Sony Corporation( Japan) today announced the launch of a head-mount image processing unit capable of receiving and outputting endoscope image signals, or controlling video images, which can then be displayed in stereoscopic 3D or 2D on an accompanying head-mounted monitor. The head-mounted monitor can also be purchased separately as an optional extra.

The dual-OLED display is compatible with a wide range of input-output signals in 2D (720p at 50 or 60Hz, 1080i at 50 or 60Hz, and even 1080p at 50 or 60Hz) and in stereoscopic 3D (Side-by-side or dual stream formats).

At the bottom of the diplay unit, a gap has been created to enable the wearer to view both the images inside the head-mounted monitor, and the area immediately below them (so he will not remove the wrong organ by mistake).

As for now, the unit is only available in Japan for a 1.5 MYens (around 15,000$).

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Use with Surgical Laparoscopes

Laparoscopic surgery, whereby an endoscope is inserted through multiple keyhole incisions in a patient's abdomen allowing the surgeon to confirm video images displayed on a monitor in real time, is becoming increasingly widespread as a procedure that minimizes the strain on patients when compared to open surgery.

Furthermore, in recent years, realistic 3D stereoscopic  images capable of conveying visual depth-related information related in high definition and with extreme precision have been recognized as providing significant advantages in the medical field, and there is great potential demand for this technology. This year, a number of medical device manufacturers have released 3D-compatible endoscopes on the market and these devices have gained attention for their extremely accurate three-dimensional images of the area being operated on, and thereby contribute to improving surgical precision. Consequently, there has been an increase in demand for high-precision 3D images and monitors.


Accordingly, Sony is launching a head-mount image processor, which includes a 3D head-mounted monitor, and is compatible with 3D surgical laparoscope. It incorporates Sony's advanced 3D and display-related technologies to realize a standard of 3D images that meet the demands of medical professionals, and proposes new workflows.

HD OLEDs with Picture-in-Picture feature

Furthermore, Sony's 'Picture in Picture (PinP)' capability enables two images to be displayed simultaneously. Images can also be flipped to the left, right, up, or down, for different display perspectives. For example, if a team of surgeons are working together in the same operating theater, this feature can be utilized to enable laparoscopic images from the operating surgeon to be viewed by other surgeons or assistants standing in other positions, and each can view the laparoscopic images from their respective viewing angle. Sony aims to contribute to the development of 3D laparoscopic surgery by providing functionality of this nature that meets the latest operating theater needs.

Key Features

  • HD OLED panels: They deliver high-grade images This new monitor is fitted with two 0.7-inch (18.0mm diagonal) OLED panels (native resolution 1280 x 720 pixels each),
  • High contrast: The panels are self-emitting, which achieves extremely high contrast ratio that exceeds measurement parameters.
  • Color reproducibility: Enables extremely pure coloring and smooth gradation. Vividly displays subtle color differences in the target area, which needs to be closely observed during surgery.
  • Rapid response performance: OLED panels emit light the instant electric current is applied, giving incredibly fast response performance. The panels can emulate the fast movements of surgical instruments to vividly display images with minimal residual image.
  • 'Dual Panel 3D method' delivers extremely pure, crosstalk-free 3D images. Here, with two independent displays, there is no crosstalk at all, and no loss of resolution as in single panel displays.
  • Comfort: comfort and wearability suit the operating environment so surgeons can wear the device and continue to move their bodies freely and flexibly. The device fits securely, even if the person wearing it moves their head to the left or right, up or down. The device has been designed to provide balance when the user wears it in a standing position, while the cushioning at the forehead and on the top of the head provides comfort even when worn for long periods of time.
  • Bottom Viewing gap: A gap has been created at the bottom of the device to enable the wearer to view both the images inside the head-mounted monitor, and the area immediately below them, with the smallest of eye movements. This also enables the assistant to seamlessly pass any required instruments to the surgeon during the operation.
  • Image flip feature: left or right, or 180 degree rotation Images output by the laparoscope can be flipped to the left or right, or rotated 180 degrees.
  • Input-Outputs: Equipped with wide range of input-output terminals for connection to various endoscopic cameras, the display processing unit is equipped with four different input-output terminals, including DVI and SDI, to ensure compatibility with image signals from various endoscopic cameras.

Source: Sony.