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Usability Evaluation of the Kinect in Aiding Surgeon Computer Interaction

Stuij, S. M. (2013) Usability Evaluation of the Kinect in Aiding Surgeon Computer Interaction. Master's Thesis / Essay, Human-Machine Communication.

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Interest in Gesture-based interaction in the operating room (OR) environment is rising. The main advantage of introducing such an interface in the OR is that it enables direct interaction between computer and surgeon while ensuring asepsis, as opposed to asking an assistant to interact with the patient’s medical images. The purpose of this study was to determine whether a modern gesture-based interface using the Kinect is feasible and desirable during surgical procedures. After an extensive exploratory research phase including OR observations, interviews with surgeons and a questionnaire, a user-based usability evaluation was conducted with the open-source medical imaging toolkit MITO and the Microsoft Kinect. Healthcare professionals were asked to conduct prototypical tasks in a simulated OR environment in the University Medical Centre of Groningen. Obtained performance and usability measures were compared to a control condition where the participant gave instructions to an assistant, comparable to the current OR situation. Results of the usability evaluation indicated that surgeons were generally positive about gesture-based interaction and would like to use the tested system. Performance measures indicated that the current system was generally slower in executing the prototypical tasks compared to asking an assistant. However this was during their first encounter with such a novel technique; an expert user showed significant faster completion times. Another limitation of using the Kinect as gesture-based interaction technique is its reduced accuracy while conducting measurements on medical images for example. Due to the importance of accurate selection in clinical image viewers a second study was conducted on different selection techniques in order to determine which technique is most accurate and appropriate for gesture-based selection. Two popular selection techniques: ‘Dwell’ and ‘Push’ were compared to the current mouse condition. Furthermore two different spatial resolutions were compared due to the importance of a small interaction space above the patient. Results from this experiment indicated that the tested techniques are significantly less accurate and more time-costly than the mouse control condition. However there was a significant effect between the two different spatial resolutions, indicating the importance of higher resolution depth-cameras. Finally suggestions for usability improvements for the test-case system were proposed and important guidelines for future gesture-based interaction systems in the operating room. From these results we can conclude that the concept of gesture-based interaction using low-cost commercially available hardware, such as the Kinect, is feasible for operating room purposes. Although the accuracy is lower and execution times are slower compared to the current situation in which the surgeon directs an assistant, surgeons rate the usability of the tested system high, and would already prefer to use this system than asking an assistant due to the direct and sterile form of interaction. Furthermore training and future technological innovations such as higher resolution depth-camera’s can possibly improve the performance of gesture-based interaction.

Item Type: Thesis (Master's Thesis / Essay)
Supervisor name: Cnossen, F.
Degree programme: Human-Machine Communication
Thesis type: Master's Thesis / Essay
Language: English
Date Deposited: 15 Feb 2018 07:53
Last Modified: 02 May 2019 12:02

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