Office of Technology Transfer – University of Michigan

Instrument Tracking Endo-illuminator for Vitreoretinal Surgery

Technology #5823

Questions about this technology? Ask a Technology Manager

Download Printable PDF

Image Gallery
CAD rendering of device prototype
Ira Schachar
Managed By
Tiefei Dong
Senior Licensing Specialist, Life Sciences 734-763-5332

This technology securely positions and actively aims an endo-illuminator during an intraocular surgical procedure. Clinicians prefer to carry out vitreoretinal operations with two hands free to manipulate instruments. However, the need for intraocular illumination during the procedure means the surgeon must use one hand to position a light source within the eye. Other options to position the endo-illuminator crowd the operating space and/or do not light the procedure region sufficiently. This endo-illuminator address both issues, freeing up precious operating space as well as surgeons’ hands to enable bi-manual vitreoretinal operations.

Instrument-tracking and improved illumination in a compact design

By incorporating an actuating tip at the end of the endo-illuminator, researchers at the Univeristy of Michigan have created a device capable of tracking a surgical instrument – and therefore providing direct lighting to the surgical region – in real time. This method has an improved response time over assistant-controlled techniques and the direct illumination scheme provides shadow-free light to the operating region. The entire apparatus is fixed to an anchor, eliminated the need for the surgeon or an assistant to hold/position the endoilluminator, enabling bimanual surgeries and conserving working space above and around the patient.


  • Vitreoretinal operations
  • Other endoscopic procedures


  • Enables bi-manual surgery
  • Instrument tracking
  • No shadows or other lighting artifacts
  • Secure, compact design