How Likely Is It To Need Surgeries in Space? - Deepstash

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How Likely Is It To Need Surgeries in Space?

How Likely Is It To Need Surgeries in Space?

But how likely is it that an astronaut will actually need surgery?

For a crew of seven people, researchers estimate that there will be an average of one surgical emergency every 2.4 years during a Mars mission.

The main causes include injury, appendicitis, gallbladder inflammation or cancer. Astronauts are screened extensively when they are selected, but surgical emergencies can occur in healthy people and may be exacerbated in the extreme environment of space.

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As well as distance, the extreme environment faced during transit to and on Mars includes

Robotic surgery is another option that has been used routinely on Earth and tested for planetary excursions.

The surgeries carried out in space so far have revealed that a large amount of support equipment is essential. This is a luxury the crew may not have on a virgin voyage to Mars.

When orbiting or settled on Mars, however, we would ideally need a hypothetical “traumapod”, with radiation shielding, surgical robots, advanced life support and restraints.

Bodily fluids will also behave differently in space and on Mars. The blood in our veins may stick to instruments due to surface tension.

Mars is a whopping 33.9 million miles away from Earth, when closest. In comparison, the International Space Agency (ISS) orbits just 248 miles above Earth.

Surgical emergencies are in fact one of the main challenges when it comes to human space travel. But over the last few years, space medicine researchers have come up with a number of ideas that could help, from surgical robots to 3D printe...

Surgery in microgravity is possible and has already been carried out, albeit not on humans yet.

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