When performing surgery on a brain tumor, regular biopsy needles usually pose the risk of hitting a blood vessel, killing the patient.
The optical imaging probe is encased within a brain biopsy needle. It is the size of a human hair and can show surgeons blood vessels before the needle can damage them, avoiding bleeds that can be potentially fatal.
It has a tiny fiber-optic camera that is attached to a flashlight and shines infrared light while inserting the biopsy needle. A computer analyzes the video coming from the camera and warns surgeons if there is a vessel in the way.