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A doctor performs his first 5G surgery for the dream of robotics

Dr. Antonio Lacy of the Hospital Clinic in Barcelona delivers a speech on the first live, 5G tele-mentee surgery at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.

New generation wireless technology is bringing medical robots closer to the world of remote surgery, a Spanish doctor said Wednesday after completing the world's first 5G-powered telemarketing operation.

In the past, doctors used wireless networks through telemarketing, but the speed of 5G increases the quality and definition of the image, essential elements for medical teams to make decisions with the greatest number of people. possible information and the least possible errors.

"This is a first step toward realizing our dream of remote operations in the near future," said Dr. Antonio de Lacy, after providing real-time guidance via a 5G video link from a congress center in Barcelona to a surgical team. operated a patient with an intestinal tumor about five kilometers from the clinic of the hospital.

5G dramatically reduces latency – the time it takes to respond to information sent – wireless networks, so images and data are relayed almost instantly.

Experts predict that 5G will allow surgeons to control a robot arm so they can perform operations in remote areas without specialist doctors.

De Lacy, head of the hospital's gastrointestinal surgery department, used his finger to draw on a screen an area of ​​the intestine where nerves lie and explained to the team how navigate the surgery.

The event was part of the Mobile World Congress, the world's largest annual mobile phone industry event, taking place in the coastal city of the Mediterranean this week.

John Hoffman, President and CEO of the GSMA, the body of the mobile communications industry, which organizes the annual show, said it was "the first operation in the real surgery world with 5G mentors ".

"It's really revolutionary and one of the benefits that 5G will bring us," he added.

During the operation, the latency of the 5G connection was only 0.01 seconds, compared with the latency period of 0.27 seconds with the 4G wireless networks that currently prevail in developing countries.

"If you plan to do remote assisted surgery, you have to be there almost in person, you can not have a latency greater than two milliseconds, and that's where 5G technology comes in," told AFP the GSMA's chief executive, Mats Granryd.

The lower latency, faster speeds and large data capacity of the 5G could also help revolutionize multiplayer mobile gaming, factory robots and make possible new technologies such as autonomous cars.

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