A start-up in Japan, called Kairos, is using 8K cameras to allow laparoscopy (keyhole surgery) using a 70″ Super Hi-vision 8K monitor. The endoscope costs around $500,000, but the company hopes to sell as many as 300 per year. The Nikkei reports that Fuji Keizai estimates the market for medical equipment at 4K and above will represent 30% of the surgical microscope market and 20% of the surgical endoscope market, respectively, by 2025.
The high resolution of the cameras and displays allow much finer details to be seen by surgeons, enabling more sophisticated interventions. However, larger monitors needed for 8K display are likely to be a problem in small operating rooms. Typical endoscopy displays are around 27″ and support FullHD resolution.
Sony and Olympus have been working together to develop 4K 3D endoscopy. We have also reported on the 3DInMed project that has been progressing in Germany. (3IT2 Doctors Still Keen on 3D) Eizo has also developed 4K endoscopy monitors since it took over the Panasonic endoscopy monitor business (Eizo Goes to UltraHD for Endoscopy and Eizo Takes Panasonic Monitor Business).