Low-Cost Laparoscopy for Global Surgery
Jenna Mueller, a Postdoctoral Associate at the Center, co-leads the Laparoscopy project with pediatric surgeon, Tamara Fitzgerald, to develop a low-cost, durable, and reusable laparoscope for intra-abdominal surgeries in low and middle-income countries (LMICs). Laparoscopic surgery is the standard-of-care in high-income countries for many cancer excisions. It avoids large incisions by using a tiny camera and fine instruments manipulated through keyhole incisions but is generally unavailable in LMICs due to expensive laparoscopic equipment (~$215,000 for initial purchase) and service contracts. Jenna and Tamara received intramural grants through a program called Bass Connections at Duke University to develop a course sequence for the 2018-2019 and 2019-2020 academic years.