Medical startup raises $20m for augmented reality surgery headsets

A London startup developing holographic surgery headsets has raised $20m (£15m) from the backers of Facebook’s Oculus headset.

Touch Surgery, founded by two former surgeons, plans to use the funds to launch an “augmented reality” tool that trains medics on the finer points of surgery. Wearing a Microsoft Hololens headset, they would see a live video feed of a professional surgeon, overlaid with virtual guides to how the surgery is performed.

The funding was led by US venture capital firm 8VC, a San Francisco fund whose founders invested in Oculus VR before Facebook acquired it for $2bn in 2014.

It brings Touch Surgery’s total raised to $30m, following previous backing from London venture fund Balderton Capital.

Touch Surgery was founded in 2013 and its current app provides video tutorials of hundreds for surgical procedures.

The new tool, Go Surgery, would be designed to give trainees a hands-on view of surgery with step by step guides holographically projected onto the screen. Medical training is seen as one of the most promising areas for augmented reality, slashing the cost of existing training.

Go Surgery is set to launch in 2018 following the success of its app and following testing at hospitals in the UK and US.

Touch Surgery co-founder Dr Jean Nehme said: “We found that tens of thousands of people were downloading the app. We started out trying to build a technology that we would use. We wanted to know how we could train and perform surgery better.

“It is early days for this technology but we are very bullish on how augmented reality and virtual reality are going to be key technologies in the operating room of the future.”

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Image Credit: Touch Surgery

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About Peter Coffaro 681 Articles
A growth-driven and strategic executive, Peter Coffaro commands more than 20 years of progressive management success within the orthopedic industry. Recognized by MedReps.com as one of the top medical sales influencers in the industry; he has 10 years of combined sales management experience and has held positions as a Director, General Manager and Distributor. Peter has worked for some of the top orthopedic companies in the world - Zimmer, DePuy and Stryker. He is also the founder of OrthoFeed: a popular blog that covers orthopedic news and emerging medical technologies. Peter is a three-time Hall of Fame award winner at Johnson and Johnson and has an extensive background in organizational development, business development, sales management, digital marketing and professional education. Peter holds a B.S. degree in Biology from Northern Illinois University.

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