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Grand Rapids resident makes laparoscopic surgery cost-effective with Xenoscope

Xenoscope single–use, fog-free, HD laparoscopic imaging system photo

A new medical device technology with West Michigan roots will bring cost-effective laparoscopic surgery to low-income world populations.

Laparoscopic endoscopy is the minimally invasive way to perform surgery inside the abdomen or chest. The platform is a camera system dating back to 1987.

“And it’s pretty much the gold standard of care in this country and other developed countries, but 80% of the planet still doesn’t have this surgery due to the high cost.”

Evan Kelso tells us a laparoscopic tower is made of glass and steel hooked up to $250,000 worth of gear projecting images. The Grand Rapids resident and CEO of Xenocor is revolutionizing the technology with the Food and Drug Administration approved Xenoscope.

“We now live in a time where consumer camera systems, really driven by cell phones, have created these really high-end, HD chips and really, really efficient LED lights. And so, we’ve used that time and space to put a 1080p imaging chip and some really nice LED lights on a single-use laparoscope.”

At about $1,000 per use, it plugs directly into a laptop, tablet or television set.

“There’s a tremendous amount of demand. I mean there’s 15 million laparoscopic procedures being done worldwide currently and most of those are done in Europe, Americas, Japan and Australia. But like I mentioned before, most of the planet still does open procedures.”

Involving painful, large incisions that can take up to a month to heal compared to small poke holes that can heal in a day or two a day. Kelso believes his cost-effective leap in medicine should be available to the world.