Marescaux J, Mutter D, Soler L, Vix M, Leroy J. The virtual university applied to telesurgery: from tele-education to telemanipulation. Chirurgie. 1999;124(3):232-9

PMID: 10437282


The advent of new computer technologies appears as a revolution of surgical teaching, as well as the planning and realisation of surgical procedures. The introduction of a camera into the body of a patient, allowing the visual display of the operative procedure through the use of miniaturised camera constitutes the greatest alteration that the surgical world has experienced at the end of this century: mini-invasive surgery is born. This revolution was announces further changes: the development of telecommunication devices applied to medicine (tele-education, teletraining, telementoring, teleproctoring and tele-accreditation) constitutes the basis of cybersurgery or virtual reality allowing the merging of the concepts of telepresence and telemanipulation. These new concepts were developed at the European Institute of TeleSurgery of Strasbourg. The TESUS project developed the use of surgical images and data transmission through the realisation of international multi-site video conferences between surgeons. The WEBS project created the first Virtual University concept placing surgical techniques at the surgeon's disposal through Internet. The HESSOS project uses virtual reality as a surgical simulation system. The MASTER project allows to develop the concept of distant telemanipulation. It is now possible to face surgical teaching outside of the restricted University frame and to conceive teaching on a world level, offering to the practitioner unimaginable possibilities of formation, training and planning of surgical procedures.