By Nnamdi Odumody
Dr Ling Zhipei, a surgeon at the People’s Liberation Army General Hospital, has performed the world’s first ever brain surgery over a 5G mobile network. Using surgical robots, he put a deep brain stimulation implant, a medical device, into a patient with Parkinson’s disease while he was at Sanya, on the island of Hainan, while his patient was in Beijing more than 1,800 miles (3,000km) away.
A Chinese surgeon has performed the world’s first remote brain surgery using 5G technology, with the patient 3,000km away from the operating doctor.Dr. Ling Zhipei remotely implanted a neurostimulator into his patient’s brain on Saturday, Chinese state-run media reports. The surgeon manipulated the instruments in the Beijing-based PLAGH hospital from a clinic subsidiary on the southern Hainan island, located 3,000km away. The surgery is said to have lasted three hours and ended successfully. The patient, suffering from Parkinson’s disease, is said to be feeling well after the pioneering operation.The doctor used a computer connected to the next-generation 5G network developed by Chinese tech giant Huawei. The new device enabled a near real-time connection, according to Dr. Ling. “You barely feel that the patient is 3,000 kilometers away,” he said.
According to him, the technology will make it easier for medics to operate on people who live in more remote areas and can’t travel. The operation was performed using surgical robots controlled by Dr Ling who connected to them through a 5G mobile network while he was working in Hainan. The procedure lasted for about three hours, and the patient was fine after the operation.
Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) helps to control problems associated with movement, and is the main type of surgery used to treat Parkinson’s disease. It involves implanting very fine wires with electrodes at their tips into the brain. These are connected to extensions under the skin behind the ear and down the neck which then connect to a pulse generator. When the device is turned on, electrodes deliver high frequency stimulation to the targeted area which changes signals in the brain that causes Parkinson’s.
Dr Ling said that the 5G network has solved problems like video lag and remote control delay experienced under the 4G network ensuring a nearly real time operation.
The operation was performed with the help of China Mobile network and Huawei’s 5G technology. Also recently a liver surgery was recently carried out over 5G.
5G is enabling intelligent capabilities of the future of work, and healthcare is not left out.