Performing Surgery In Space: Practically Possible Or Just A Sci-fi?

Even an astronaut may need medical help. The voyage through the dark, anti-gravitational region takes its toll on the body. Some health problems may get worse and require surgery such as exposure to radiation, bone and muscle atrophy, zero gravity etc.

Considering all these negative effects Dr. George Pantalos have built some amazing surgical instruments and techniques which will enable surgeons to perform surgery in space. Gravity reduction is one of the major problems for emergency medicine. It’s really a tough job to manage the bodily and surgical fluids in low gravity. George said, “Without hydrostatic pressure, the surface tension… may predominate; – You need to anticipate ways of controlling the fluid.”

A special glove box is designed for performing surgery in space, where they can control the flow of the fluids and decide the correct spot to place the hemispherical dome around the site; it can also reduce the risk of cross-contamination.

“During surgery on the earth, you might have one instrument to provide suction, you might have another instrument to provide cautery, another instrument to provide irrigation of the surgical site, and you might need some special lighting. We’ve created an instrument that combines all of those things together,”

This was essential as spaceflights lack enough space for so many instruments, so, George created the lightweight medical kit well synchronized with both 3D printers and robots.

Water is a mandatory element required for surgery especially in the case of wound waste recovery, we can’t leave it. George has created a perfect system which can create drinkable water and sterile saline out of the leftover fluids from the surgery.

George said, “If we can accomplish this kind of medical care during an exploration in space there is a good chance we could do it, let’s say, on a lunar colony that’s been established for visitors to come to visit the moon.”

Surgery in space is possible and it is going to happen to make spaceflight much safer than before.

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