Surgical Headlight

Developing a durable, affordable, high-quality surgical headlight to improve surgical safety

More than 400,000 surgical providers around the world are working in health facilities with lighting constraints.¹ Every year, 24 million patients are at risk from inadequate or unreliable lighting during surgery. 

Lifebox is working on a solution: a durable, affordable, high-quality surgical headlight.

In a survey – conducted by Lifebox – of surgeons working in low-resource settings, a majority reported poor surgical lighting as a major risk to patient safety. Nearly one-third reported delayed or cancelled operations due to poor lighting.² Even in facilities with a functioning backup generator, there is a lighting gap when switching to generator power.

Our aim is simple – to save lives. Improving surgical lighting will help avoid cancellations of essential and emergency surgery due to lighting problems, prevent unnecessary deaths from unsafe surgery, and equip surgical teams in low-resource countries with a robust, low-cost headlight to be used during operations.

Alongside developing a robust lighting solution, Lifebox is working with partners to address the lighting gap by equipping surgical providers with headlights.

The Lighting Gap

  • 24 million

    patients at-risk annually from inadequate lighting²

  • 80%

    report quality of lighting a patient safety risk

  • 48%

    experience frequent power outages

“During a surgery to remove esophageal cancer, once the patient was asleep and the belly was open, the power went out. People quickly pulled out cellphones but the operation was on hold. Power returned, but, over the course of the case, the power went out another three times.”
Surgical provider, Ethiopia
Surgical lighting and cesarean sections

Surgical lighting and cesarean sections

Cesarean delivery is the single most common major operation worldwide performed in a wide range of health facilities. Many facilities depend on ambient light from windows or assistants holding flashlights or mobile phones to illuminate the surgical field. This may not provide the intensity of lighting needed for a safe surgery.

Headlight Specifications

Headlight Specifications

Lifebox developed minimum specifications for a surgical headlight for resource-constrained settings, published in JAMA Surgery

Read here

¹ Forrester JA, Torgeson K, Weiser TG. Minimum Specifications for a Lifebox Surgical Headlight for Resource-Constrained Settings. JAMA Surg. 2019;154(1):80–82. doi:10.1001/jamasurg.2018.4205

² Forrester, J.A., Boyd, N.J., Fitzgerald, J.E.F. et al. Impact of Surgical Lighting on Intraoperative Safety in Low-Resource Settings: A Cross-Sectional Survey of Surgical Providers. World J Surg 41, 3055–3065 (2017).

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