PharmaShots - ViewPoints Interview: True Digital Surgery’s Aidan Foley Shares Insight on the Aesculap Aeos Robotic Digital Microscope

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Tuba Khan | November 27, 2020

In a recent interview with PharmaShots, Aidan Foley, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of True Digital Surgery shared his insights and highlights on data of the Aesculap Aeos Robotic Digital Microscope.


  • The robotic digital microscope enables surgeons to execute precision movements in neurosurgery, spine, and ear, nose, and throat operations, through a multi-axis robotic arm. The platform also offers potential improvements to safety and efficiency during surgeries as the heads-up display can be viewed while wearing PPE, which can help overcome the spread of COVID-19
  • The platform utilizes 3D digital visualization, state-of-the-art software, and augmentation capabilities which are unmatched by any competitor digital microscope platform. Its customizable image modes functionality and fluorescence backlighting enhance the precision needs that surgeons require for complex surgical procedures
  • Additionally, the Aesculap Aeos Robotic Digital Microscope is approved for use and available in the EU and further markets

Tuba:  Discuss in detail about the specification of Aesculap Aeos Robotic Digital Microscope.

Aidan:  The Aesculap Aeos Robotic Digital Microscope combines enhanced surgical visualization and precise robotic movement to provide neurosurgeons with stunning 3D views and a very efficient way of conducting surgery. It offers precision movements guided by the surgeon via a robotic multi-axis arm. The state-of-the-art software provides surgeons with customizable image modes and fluorescence illumination. (Note: DIR fluorescence technology is currently available in European Markets only, not in the U.S.). The Aesculap Aeos platform’s technology encompasses 3D details with outstanding depth-of-field and 10x optical zoom that delivers full resolution regardless of magnification level. As an exclusively digital microscope platform, the Aesculap Aeos can be customized with simple software updates.

Approximately four-out-of-five neurosurgeons report pain after a day of surgery, in part owing to conventional microscope technology that requires contorting their body in unergonomic postures for many hours. These unergonomic positions often lead to debilitating pain which has been found to affect the performance of surgeons.  

Source: TDS

Tuba:  How is the Robotic Digital Microscope superior from the other competitor digital microscope platforms?

Aidan:  With the Aesculap Aeos, the surgeon can see both the fluorescent signal as well as the wide field of view, which is an advantage because they can operate in an environment that’s closer to what they’re used to looking at, but then also have context about the entire surgical scene while still getting the critical information they need about the tumor or blood flow. Robotic-assisted features that include location presets called WayPoints allow automated camera relocation to and from preset locations. The Lock-to-Target feature enables manual adjustment of the microscope position while maintaining focus on a surgical point of interest. Additionally, with coaxial illumination, light travels down the path the surgeon is looking down and eliminates shadows on the scene. The HDR (high-dynamic range) technology dramatically reduces the glint or glare that a surgeon sees reflecting off their tools or other shiny objects throughout a surgery.

Tuba:  Tell us more about the Image Modes feature of the Aesculap Aeos Robotic Digital Microscope.

Aidan:  The innovative Image Modes feature delivers augmentation capabilities without the need for an overlay and enables surgeons to view features in 3D that the human eye cannot, including the ability to manipulate color and the image in a way that’s beneficial for the surgeon. Additionally, the customizable fluorescence illumination enhances the patient’s micro-anatomy to provide precise information needed in complex procedures.

Tuba:  How is the digital microscope helping doctors amid the COVID-19 pandemic?

Aidan:  Healthcare professionals were already facing many challenges for their time and attention prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. By offering improved ergonomics and an immersive 3D 4K display, not available with traditional ocular microscopes, the Aesculap Aeos platform allows surgeons to perform surgery with their head raised seeing the microsurgical image on the 3D, 4K monitor while wearing a protective face shield – potentially leading to improved workplace health and safety for all the healthcare workers in the operating room during complex multi-hour microsurgical procedures.

Tuba:  What is your take on the efficiency and accuracy of a 3D surgery digital platform compared to the conventional methods?

Aidan:  The Aesculap Aeos can provide a solution to the limitations of traditional optical surgical microscopes, which can prolong surgery time and may contribute to patient safety issues such as tissue damage and skin burns owing to the heat generated through xenon illumination. The Aesculap Aeos uses cool LED illumination, making for a safer experience for the surgeon and patient. The 3D display, which isn’t available with traditional ocular microscopes, allows surgeons to perform surgery with their head raised seeing the microsurgical image on the 4K monitor, therefore minimizing physical strain. The Aeos can also be programmed to move very finely using digital controls.

Tuba:  Can we have a brief discussion over the collaboration of True Digital Surgery and Aesculap?

Aidan:  The Aesculap Aeos Robotic Digital Microscope is a result of True Digital Surgery’s cooperation with B. Braun’s Aesculap unit, a German-based company with a 150-year legacy in developing, manufacturing, and marketing innovative medical products and services to the healthcare industry. Together, the two companies’ expertise and experience have led us to develop a digital microscope which has proven to produce outstanding results with its recent sales successes against large surgical microscope players.

Tuba:  Can we expect more partnerships in the future considering it a successful one with Aesculap?

Aidan:  With a nearly 20-year record of creating new technologies that are designed to meet the precision needs of surgeons today, we are proud to be a disruptive force in the rapidly evolving MedTech sector. True Digital Surgery is actively developing features that will integrate artificial intelligence (AI), augmented reality (AR), and machine learning (ML) into upcoming digital microscopy products and we remain focused on collaborating with strategic partners.

Tuba:  Would you agree that integration of optics and robotics with AR can result in more innovative products beneficial to surgeons and patients?

Aidan:  Absolutely. True Digital Surgery is continuing the legacy of building a digital surgery platform with integrated applications and robotics to enhance the surgical experience and advance patient results. We have developed a 3D image system that vastly enhances what surgeons can see, and have integrated these capabilities with precision robotics and state-of-the-art algorithms that meet the needs of the modern O.R.

Tuba:  When we can expect its launch in other countries apart from the US?

Aidan:  In addition to the U.S., the Aesculap Aeos Robotic Digital Microscope is also approved for use and available in the European Union and additional global markets.

About Aidan Foley:

Aidan Foley is a Chief Executive Officer of True Digital Surgery (TDS) and also serves as its Chairman of the Board. He served multiple companies in the past and brings decades of executive-level experience from the Technology and Med Tech sectors to TDS

Author: Indhu Tovar