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Sidra Akhter, James Hermsen, Pramila Kalaga, Jesse Cox, Gabe Linke, Tyler Scherr, Haziq Akhter, Donny W Suh; Surgical Loupe Customization to Prevent Chronic Back and Neck Pain During Ocular Surgeries.. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2018;59(9):5214.
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Chronic neck and back pain are commonly reported musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) among ophthalmologists using surgical loupes. Currently available surgical loupes are heavy, exert a center of gravity onto the nasal bridge, and do not have adequate declination angle of the surgical loupes for ophthalmologists during surgery. Surgeons compensate by leaning forward and flexing the neck and back in non ergonomic postures which are prone to muscle fatigue and injuries by placing increased pressure on vertebral discs of the axial skeleton. The aim of our project was to design a lightweight surgical loupe with a more optimal declination angle and special frames that improves posture, thereby removing excess force exerted on the axial skeleton.
We redesigned and 3D printed currently available surgical loupes to make the changes to the current surgical loupes. By maximizing the angle of declination and utilized a prismatic effect of concave lenses in Galilean telescopes to improve neck posture and allowing the operator sit upright. Additionally, force exerted on the nasal bridge by the loupes was reduced and redistributed over the head via a novel diagonal adjustable head strap.
A lightweight surgical loupe that offloads weight from the nasal bridge to be evenly distributed across the top of the head and dramatically improves posture by maximizing the declination angle without compromising the surgical view. With these changes, both MSD and discomfort of the weight of the glasses can greatly be alleviated.
To reduce MSD symptoms, important considerations for surgical loupe use include the declination angle, working distance, weight of the loupes, and a head strap that will redistribute the weight of the loupes.
This is an abstract that was submitted for the 2018 ARVO Annual Meeting, held in Honolulu, Hawaii, April 29 - May 3, 2018.
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