Chinese doctors use 5G to perform surgery from hundreds of miles away

The surgeon behind your future life-saving surgery might not have to be in the same room as you. Heck, thanks to the burgeoning 5G revolution, they might not have to be in the same state as you. This is what was demonstrated by doctors in China earlier this month when cardiologist Huiming Guo assisted in carrying out a remote heart operation on a 41-year-old woman. While Guo was located in Guangdong General Hospital at the time, his patient was 400 kilometers away in Gaozhou People’s Hospital.

The use of 5G technology allowed Guo to observe and issue instructions during the four-hour procedure using 4K ultra-high definition live video. The 5G network used by the hospital is approximately 10 times faster than the current 4G mobile internet being used. In this scenario, it means more stable video streaming in a situation where a missed detail could, literally, make the difference between life and death.

“Advanced internet technology can save our doctors a lot of time because they don’t have to travel as much. They can use that time to save more lives,” Zhiwei Zhang, of Guangdong General Hospital, said in a press conference.

This isn’t the only operation that has been carried out remotely in China as of late. Recently, a surgery to repair a chest wall was carried out by doctors in Second People’s Hospital in Guangdong, while the patient was located 200 kilometers away in Guangdong’s Yangshan Hospital. Another operation saw neurosurgeon Zhipei Li carry out a cross-country robotic probe-based brain stimulation procedure on a Parkinson’s patient in Beijing.

Like next-generation telephones, the use of telepresence tools to let people remotely participate has been utilized in a broad range of areas. For example, telepresence robots have been used to let kids with chronic conditions attend school or even graduation ceremonies when they cannot physically be present. Combine that with 5G technology and the slew of new robotic and virtual reality-based surgical tools, and it seems that there are some very exciting implications for the future of medicine. Although it’s still preferable to have a doctor physically present for a procedure, this will allow specialists to be called on to assist even when they cannot travel to a particular hospital, potentially due to the urgency of an operation.

A hospital in Barcelona, Spain, and another in Munich, Germany, have already said that they plan to test 5G-assisted surgeries sometime before 2020.

Emerging Tech

How emotion-tracking A.I. will change computing as we know it

Affectiva is just one of the startups working to create emotion-tracking A.I. that can work out how you're feeling. Here's why this could change the face of computing as we know it.
Smart Home

I have seen the future, and it’s full of salad-making robots

Think that robots bussing tables, tossing salads and baking bread is a futuristic concept? It's actually not as far away as you might think. Robots took center stage at a food robotics summit in San Francisco this week, where they showed…

Apple and Qualcomm settle all disputes, reach six-year agreement on chips

Apple and Qualcomm have announced that they have settled all disputes between them around the world -- and not only that, but have also agreed to a six-year agreement for Qualcomm to supply Apple with chips.
Emerging Tech

Scientists manage to 3D print an actual heart using human cells

Scientists at Tel Aviv University have achieved a world-first by 3D printing a small-scale heart, complete with blood vessels, ventricles, and chambers. Here's why that's so exciting.

Amazon slashes prices on Ecovacs Deebot robot vacuums for one day only

Amazon cut prices of two Ecovacs Deebot robot vacuums for Deals of the Day. Robot vacuums have convinced millions of their value. I bought an Ecovacs Deebot as a family gift, and after a couple of weeks my wife said, "Best gift ever."
Emerging Tech

Adidas has created a running shoe that’s made to be remade

Adidas has unveiled the Futurecraft Loop running shoe that it claims is the first performance footwear to be 100% recyclable. The shoe is the latest green initiative by the sportswear company and will go on sale in 2021.
Emerging Tech

NASA is building an inflatable space robot named King Louie

NASA is funding an inflatable robot called King Louie which could travel to the stars in deflated form and then be blown up when and where required. Here is why that's so exciting.
Emerging Tech

Yale scientists restore cellular activity in a pig’s brain hours after its death

In what some may view as a porcine version of Frankenstein, Yale University scientists have restored circulation and cellular activity in a pig’s brain four hours after its death. The study is likely to be used to study brain function
Emerging Tech

Russia’s robot news anchor gives human TV presenters hope

Human news anchors anxious about robots taking their jobs will be feeling reassured this week after the appearance on Russian TV of a news-reading android that clearly needs a bit of work.
Emerging Tech

U.S. police are testing out Batman-style bola guns to catch criminals

U.S. police are taking a page out of Batman’s playbook with a new grappling hook gun, called the BolaWrap, which fires out a kevlar cord able to tie up assailants in the blink of an eye.
Emerging Tech

U.S., U.K. embrace autonomous robot spy subs that can stay at sea for months

Unmanned, autonomous robot spy submarines that are able to stay at sea for months at a time may be coming to both the United States and its ally across the pond, the U.K. Here's what we know so far.
Digital Trends Live

Digital Trends Live: Facebook data security, Ubisoft helps Notre Dame, and more

Join DT Live as we discuss Facebook security issues, Ubisoft's plan to help rebuild Notre Dame, and more. We are also joined by Emily Teteut of Snap the Gap, Jennifer Sendrow of New York Public Radio, and DJ and producer Zeke Thomas.
Emerging Tech

Meet the gene-edited bacteria that could make cannabis plants obsolete

Ever wanted to brew cannabis like you brew craft beer? At UC Berkeley, biologists have managed to engineer brewer’s yeast so that it produces the main cannabinoids found in marijuana.
Emerging Tech

Planet-hunting satellite discovers its first Earth-sized planet

NASA's planet hunting satellite, TESS, has made a new discovery. Last month the satellite discovered its first exoplanet. And now it has achieved another milestone, locating its first Earth-sized planet and a larger sibling planet.