Building on past research the vision is to create new technological capabilities and training programs for astronaut crews to prepare them for situations in which anesthesia will be required for medical procedures in space, on future planetary surfaces ,such as, the Lunar and Martian bases stations. The new discoveries and capabilities are applicable for teams and personnel living and working in extreme isolated, remote environments on Earth, such as, polar regions (Antarctic and Artic), deep sea explorations and high altitude expeditions.
- To establish and develop standardized emergency and surgical/anesthesia protocols and procedures, as future gold standard operational procedures for the tele-anesthesia medical industry sector,
- To create training programs for astronauts from diverse backgrounds including non-surgically trained astronaut crew, academic and medical institutes, space agencies and administrative personnel or team members with minimal medical training
- To research and develop new capabilities for offering solutions to the challenges of future space missions where astronaut crews will need to become a totally “autonomous” , independent and self-sufficient crew
In early January 2014, a simulation scenario of a medical emergency situation at an extraterrestrial Martian colony was conducted. The members of MarsCrew134 analog astronauts (led by Medical Crew Officer, Dr Susan Jewell) and Crew133 (led by Medical Crew Officer Dr Matthieu Korowmoski) at the Mars Desert Research Station, MDRS, and medical team, Drs Ceraolo and Andrian Golemis (medical team sponsored by ESA Concordia Station in Antarctica) had the opportunity to participate and collaborate in various training sessions with anesthesiologists, surgeons and space medicine physicians through a delayed video feed (to simulate the distance from Earth to Mars). The intent was to simulate remote assistance for anesthesia and surgical procedures beyond that of the Crew’s immediate training.
Led by Principal Investigator (PI), Dr. Susan Jewell, Founder / CEO, Space Surgery Institute, SSI, with co-investigators, Dr Matthieu Komorowski (Lille Hospital), and collaborators from UCSF and Stanford University, the tele-anesthesia project conducted at Mars Desert Research Station (MDRS) was an initial pre-pilot protocol development and feasibility study in tele-anesthesia training for minimal-, or non-medically trained astronaut crews during deep space missions in space surgery.
The mission statement of the ongoing research is targeted for future space explorations for developing countermeasures and mitigation strategies to develop and improve the health and safety of the next gen commercial astronauts and the commercial space tourists industry. The study was conducted with collab0rations and participation from surgeons, anesthesiologists and space physicians from members of Aerospace Medicine Association (AsMA), Space Medicine Association (SMA), Stanford Medical Center, UCSF Medical Hospital, Lille Hospital France, Microgravity Center, Brazil, McGill Medical Center, Canada, The Space Clinic, and ESA sponsored Concordia Station, Antarctica.
TRAINING, TECHNOLOGIES & INNOVATIONS
SSI plans to continue the research project for study optimization, iteration, to collect quantitative data and increase task complexity.
To date Principal Investigators, Dr Jewell and Dr Korowmoski, recently continued pioneering research in telesurgery-teleanesthesia sub-specialty of remote guidance telemedicine using various internet interfaces and telecommunication platforms integrating delivery of the training via 3D Virtual Reality (VR) using Google’s I am Cardboard googles and EEG devices.
The optimized version of the Google 3D VR googles, Google XG, will be used and tested in the upcoming study.
Credit Image: John Naelgas ( iamcardboard.com)
SSI plans to continue the research project for study optimization, iteration, to collect quantitative data and increase task complexity. Dr Jewell will continue pioneering research in teleanesthesia sub-specialty of remote guidance telemedicine using various internet interfaces and telecommunication platforms with the near term vision of integrating humanoid robotics, AI / augmented reality, such as, Google glass, Microsoft’s HOLOLENS goggles, integrating biomedical sensors, various EEG devices, and ultrasound imaging tools.
SSI will develop the capabilities, improve state-of-the-art in tele-anesthesia protocols and procedures, and address the current limiting factors and challenges, such as tele-communication delay, non-medically trained crews, learning and retention of knowledge and skill sets, and technical issues facing long-duration deep space human missions to Moon, Mars and beyond.
SSI will include medical extra-vehicular activities (MEVA), Search and Rescue operational procedures and medical triage protocols.