Types of Modern Operating Rooms and their Applications

To perform a successful surgery, an efficient and accurate setup of all the tools and necessary data in the operating room (OR) is equally important, along with the skillful surgical professionals. Therefore, operating room is one of the most important infrastructural components in a hospital or a healthcare facility.

In traditional OR setups, before the surgical procedure begins, preoperative data of each case and patient is required by the doctors. Such data is usually available either on paper or digitally on different devices that are not connected. Operating room machines and equipment are also arranged around the room, which can be pulled in or pushed back as needed. A nurse often assists the surgeon during the entire surgical/operative process. Cables and cords lying everywhere make the whole setup vulnerable to tripping equipment, pulling out an essential cord during surgery, or damaging the equipment. Such mobilization of several carts, tools, and important surgical information at the time of surgery, makes the process more complicated and increases the chances of error by the surgeons.

Now, the rapid growth in technology and increasing application of advanced surgical methods, such as minimally invasive surgery (MIS), have compelled significant developments in OR planning and designing. A modern OR requires easy real-time access to digital data and a process of managing the digital information within the room.

Modern operating room
Modern operating room

More complex procedures in the surgery mean that the patient will require more clinical supervision and an intense level of care. This has been an important factor in the shift from conventional OR toward integrated ORs.

The need and demand for improving safety to positively impact patient outcomes and simplifying workflows for the surgeon and surgical team have led to a major boost in the market. According to the BIS research, the global operating room integration systems market report highlights that the market was valued at $11,763.6 million in 2021 and is expected to reach $21,546.1 million by the end of 2031. The market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 6.28% during the forecast period from 2022 to 2031.

To get a free sample of this report, click here.

Types of Operating Rooms

In addition to the integrated OR systems, there are several other types of systems, such as hybrid OR systems or digital OR systems, which are used globally. This article is further going to discuss the different OR setups and their benefits.

1. Integrated OR: In the integrated OR setup, the patient information, OR visualization, OR display, OR lighting system, and OR imaging are all integrated, and all can communicate with one another. Following is the description of these:

• OR visualization: OR visualization products enable surgeons to view clear and high-definition images of the various organs during the procedure.

• OR lighting systems: OR lighting systems are products that are used in operating rooms to ensure adequate light during the procedure to enhance precision and accuracy.

• OR imaging: It includes intraoperative imaging modalities that enable imaging of the patient during the surgical procedure, thereby guiding surgeons throughout the procedure.

• OR display: OR displays are medical monitors intended to display the operative field on a screen during the surgical procedure to enable surgeons to visualize the field in a clear and magnified manner.

All the data is connected to and displayed on a single device, which makes the surgical procedure simple, allowing the enrichment of medical data within the operating room

2. Hybrid OR: A hybrid operating room is a combination of a traditional operating room with an imaging system such as CT, MR, C-arm, etc. This combination allows for highly complex, advanced surgical procedures. The rooms and the teams are combined to form a multi-disciplinary group of clinicians prepared to perform the complex operations.

In a hybrid OR, surgical equipment, instruments, surgical tables, OR lights, equipment management systems, and surgical booms, along with fixed advanced imaging systems, are integrated, providing the capability to perform combined image-guided procedures with minimally invasive procedures. Also, if needed, a minimally invasive surgery can easily be converted to an open procedure; these spaces allow for a smooth transition to an open procedure by providing all the necessary equipment in one space. Additionally, this technology has led to the development of advanced procedures that enable greater options for patients with complex disease states.

Integrated operating room
Integrated operating room

Hybrid operating room benefits include scans of the affected body part being available for review and use immediately in the operating room. This allows the surgeon in complex situations such as the surgery of a high-risk area, like the brain, with the most up-to-date data.

3.Digital OR: A digital OR setup with the integration of all the necessary equipment for surgical procedures into one software functions as a central hub for clinical image data inside the operating room. The data is recorded, collected, and then further forwarded to the hospital’s IT system, where it is centrally stored. The surgeon can control the data inside the OR through designated displays according to their desired setup and can display the images from many different devices.


Technological advancement is significantly impacting all the areas of the healthcare system. While conventional ORs possessed all the equipment required for an operating room to function, the lack of communication among the various components was one of the major drawbacks that led to the rising interest in the implementation of integrated operating rooms.

Integrated ORs and other modern systems consist of a centralized console that integrates all the components of an OR The rising preference for minimally invasive procedures and the increasing demand for streamlining surgical workflows are major factors driving the growth of the market.

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