Robotic telesurgery: A real-world comparison of ground- and satellite-based Internet performance

R. Rayman, K. Croome, N. Galbraith, R. McClure, R. Morady, S. Peterson, S. Smith, V. Subotic, A. Van Wynsberghe, R. Patel, S. Primak

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations


Background: Telesurgery was performed with ground vs. satellite networks, and differing satellite bandwidths. Methods: The networks were compared during internal mammary artery (LIMA) dissection in pigs (n = 8). Length of LIMA dissected and surgical quality (five-point scale) were recorded. Also, satellite bandwidth was decreased (n = 7) to determine a limit for telesurgery. Results: No significant differences existed in LIMA dissection during the ground (4.3 ± 0.5 cm) and satellite phases (5.4 ± 1.1 cm; p > 0.05) or in quality of surgery, although latency on satellite was 10 times greater (55 vs. 600 ms). With decreasing satellite bandwidth, surgery was not possible below 3 Mb/s, and quality of surgery was significantly decreased comparing 9 Mb/s (4.38 ± 0.66/5) to 3Mb/s (4.10 ± 0.80/5; p < 0.05). Conclusions: Satellite communication is a viable telesurgical modality. Satellite bandwidth should be above 5 Mb/s during telesurgery if used primarily or as back-up.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)111-116
Number of pages6
JournalInternational Journal of Medical Robotics and Computer Assisted Surgery
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Biophysics
  • Computer Science Applications


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