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Novel Surgical Gloves Can Track Movements Of Hands

May, 2022

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The new smart gloves are designed for monitoring hand movements of the wearer by using multiple motion sensors added along the back of the thumb, index, and middle fingers

Surgeons need an extremely subtle and precise touch and steady hands. Now a group of scientists at the Western Sydney University, Australia developed new smart gloves designed for monitoring hand movements of the wearer using the multiple motion sensors added on the back of the thumb, index, and middle fingers. The third generation prototype of these smart gloves is in trial by surgeons in training at Liverpool Hospital in Britain.

Each of these gloves include a flexible and flat electrical cable that runs along the back of the thumb, index and middle fingers. These cables have multiple inertial measurement units (IMUs) along their length. These units monitor the movement of all the segments of fingers. Thus, each glove incorporates total nine units. The final version of this technology would include a tiny printed circuit board that is added on the glove’ back where the data from IMUs will be passed into it. With this board the globe can transmit that data via Bluetooth to an app on a smartphone, computer or tablet nearby. When students are practicing surgical procedures, using that software hand movements of these students can be assessed.

As per the team, automatically recording the hand movements of trainee surgeons is not enough, thus, this method involved creating a catalog of recordings from skilled surgeons performing set task, which students can use to compare their own performance. These gloves are designed for boosting traditional training methods and not replacing them. Moreover, these gloves can be used in other fields as well, fields that require manual agility such as art or music.

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