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Screen height as an ergonomic factor in laparoscopic surgery

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The increasing number of routinely performed laparoscopic operations causes the surgeons’ “screen work” time to rise constantly. A new ergonomic workload on the surgeons’ upper spine and shoulders is created as a result of the standard screen height position on top of the laparoscopy towers.


Eight surgeons in the authors’ surgical department were evaluated for the inclination/reclination angle of their cervical spine when using the laparoscopy towers in the authors’ department and also at their favorable screen height.


The laparoscopy towers used in the authors’ department made 3° to 14° reclination of the cervical spine necessary. The interviewed surgeons preferred a position of slight inclination, with a median of 160 cm measured from the central screen height to the floor.


Monitors of laparoscopy towers should be adapted to the surgeon’s preferred screen height: at eye level frontally with a neutral or slight inclination of the cervical spine. The authors suggest a central screen height of 160 cm, with the monitor positioned in front of the surgeon. Newer equipment from the industry should be provided.

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Correspondence to J. Zehetner.

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Zehetner, J., Kaltenbacher, A., Wayand, W. et al. Screen height as an ergonomic factor in laparoscopic surgery. Surg Endosc 20, 139–141 (2006). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00464-005-0251-1

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  • Ergonomic settings
  • Laparoscopy
  • Screen height