Activ Surgical, a pioneering digital surgery company focused on improving surgical efficiency, accuracy, patient outcomes and accessibility, today announced its ActivEdge platform. ActivEdge, an artificial intelligence (AI) and machine-learning (ML) platform, is designed to provide critical real-time intelligence and visualization to improve patient outcomes, avoid preventable surgical errors and complications, and provide significant overall savings to healthcare systems. The platform and its associated products will be initially available in the U.S. market, with plans to commercialize globally in 2021.
“The future of surgery is collaborative, with human judgment and wisdom augmented by robotics precision,” said Todd Usen, CEO, Activ Surgical. “With nearly 400,000 deaths in the U.S. every year due to avoidable medical errors, our surgical intelligence platform is designed to dramatically improve outcomes, safety and accessibility by arming surgeons with real-time information to make better informed decisions. We look forward to empowering global access to best-in-class surgery, regardless of location – saving millions of lives in the process.”
Preventable medical errors are currently the third leading cause of death, after heart attacks and cancer. Surgical errors account for 26% of these errors and are estimated to cost more than $36 billion in the U.S. Activ Surgical will initially focus on the 2.2 million most common laparoscopic procedures, including Cholecystectomy, Colectomy, Hysterectomy and Gastrectomy, where blood flow and critical structure identification are crucial to optimal outcomes.
“Innovation in the surgical vision category is long overdue; the most commonly employed surgical imaging process, ICG, uses fluorescent dye invented more than 70 years ago and does not offer real-time, objective physiologic information to surgeons when they critically need it during procedures,” said Dr. Peter Kim, co-founder and chief science officer, Activ Surgical. “Activ Surgical is designed to empower surgeons to make better informed decisions by offering real-time intelligence and visualization to dramatically reduce medical complications and surgical errors.”
“The next frontier in surgery is advanced imaging, led by innovation from companies like Activ Surgical, to enable intraoperative imaging and image overlays, guided by machine learning,” said Dr. Vipul (Vip) Patel, Medical Director of the Global Robotics Institute at Advent Health Celebration and Medical Director of the Advent Health Cancer Institute Urologic Oncology Program and Activ Survical Advisory Board member. “The potential for Activ Surgical to use AI and machine learning to inform robotics-assisted surgery – bringing together the best of human judgment and wisdom augmented by robotics precision – is a game changer in helping the surgical community achieve better outcomes.”
According to Dr. Steven D Schwaitzberg, Professor and Chairman of the Department of Surgery at University at Buffalo and Activ Surgical Advisory Board member, “As a surgeon, I rely heavily on surgical imaging to make informed decisions regarding procedures. Now that the majority of imaging systems have achieved optimal optical resolution, the next phase of innovation will be driven by companies like Activ Surgical who are developing new value-added features, including the visualization of tissue perfusion.”
Activ Surgical’s product portfolio, built on its ActiveEdge platform, includes hardware agnostic imaging software and computer-driven guidance systems, both for scopes and robots, to improve situational awareness and real-time imaging during surgical procedures and enable safe tissue access.
ActivSight, the first product based on the company’s platform, works dynamically and seamlessly with any installed visualization system to provide real-time intraoperative visual data and images not currently available to surgeons through existing technologies. The imaging module is an easy-to-adapt, connected platform that seamlessly attaches to today’s laparoscopic and arthroscopic systems so outcomes can be improved immediately, providing real-time, on demand insights, integrated into standard monitors. With ActivSight, surgical systems – from scopes to robots – can visualize blood flow in real-time with no workflow impact, unlike ICG, which does not offer real-time information to surgeons. ActivSight is expected to be cleared by the FDA in 2020. To date, eight major hospital networks across the U.S. have been established as pilot sites.
ActivInsight, the company’s second product, will transform massive amounts of data gathered intraoperatively to help characterize tissue and critical structures, providing surgeons with augmented visuals and real-time guidance. The AI and ML-based product will be designed for continuous improvement and will be underpinned by one of the industry’s largest annotated data sets to be developed by Activ Surgical over the next 12 months. ActivInsight is expected to be available within the next two years.
Additional robotics-assisted surgery offerings, ActivAssist and ActivPilot, are also in active development. ActivAssist will use ML based on the ActivInsight data set to optimally position scopes, allowing surgeons to perform at the highest level. ActivPilot will perform autonomous procedures with a surgeon in the loop to consistently achieve best-possible outcomes. Anticipated release dates for these early stage offerings are not being shared at this time.