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Feasibility Study of Utilization of Action Camera, GoPro Hero 4, Google Glass, and Panasonic HX-A100 in Spine Surgery

Lee, Chang Kyu MD; Kim, Youngjun PhD; Lee, Nam MD; Kim, Byeongwoo MD; Kim, Doyoung MD; Yi, Seong MD, PhD

doi: 10.1097/BRS.0000000000001719

Study Design. Study for feasibility of commercially available action cameras in recording video of spine.

Objective. Recent innovation of the wearable action camera with high-definition video recording enables surgeons to use camera in the operation at ease without high costs. The purpose of this study is to compare the feasibility, safety, and efficacy of commercially available action cameras in recording video of spine surgery.

Summary of Background Data. There are early reports of medical professionals using Google Glass throughout the hospital, Panasonic HX-A100 action camera, and GoPro. This study is the first report for spine surgery.

Methods. Three commercially available cameras were tested: GoPro Hero 4 Silver, Google Glass, and Panasonic HX-A100 action camera. Typical spine surgery was selected for video recording; posterior lumbar laminectomy and fusion. Three cameras were used by one surgeon and video was recorded throughout the operation. The comparison was made on the perspective of human factor, specification, and video quality.

Results. The most convenient and lightweight device for wearing and holding throughout the long operation time was Google Glass. The image quality; all devices except Google Glass supported HD format and GoPro has unique 2.7K or 4K resolution. Quality of video resolution was best in GoPro. Field of view, GoPro can adjust point of interest, field of view according to the surgery. Narrow FOV option was the best for recording in GoPro to share the video clip. Google Glass has potentials by using application programs. Connectivity such as Wi-Fi and Bluetooth enables video streaming for audience, but only Google Glass has two-way communication feature in device.

Conclusion. Action cameras have the potential to improve patient safety, operator comfort, and procedure efficiency in the field of spinal surgery and broadcasting a surgery with development of the device and applied program in the future.

Level of Evidence: N/A

Supplemental Digital Content is available in the text

*Department of Neurosurgery, Spine and Spinal Cord Institute, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea

Center for Bionics, Korea Institute of Science and Technology, Seoul, South Korea

Department of Brain and Cognitive Engineering, Korea University, Seoul, South Korea.

Address correspondence and reprint requests to Seong Yi, MD, PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Neurosurgery, Spine and Spinal Cord Institute Yonsei University College of Medicine, 50-1 Yonsei-ro, Seodaemun-gu, Seoul 120-752, Korea; E-mail:

Received 23 March, 2016

Revised 1 May, 2016

Accepted 18 May, 2016

The manuscript submitted does not contain information about medical device(s)/drug(s).

A faculty research grant of Yonsei University College of Medicine for 2014 (6–2014–0189) and 2015 (6–2015–0043), the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant funded by the Korea government (NRF-2014M3A7B4051596) and the Yonsei University Yonsei-SNU Collaborative Research Fund of 2014 were received in support of this work.

No relevant financial activities outside the submitted work.

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