Remote expertise through the power of merged reality

Access to this ground-breaking technology is included at no cost with your InterSurgeon clinician membership. Help Lightning allows experienced surgeons to guide and interactively assist others during operations in real-time, anywhere in the world.

Add Help Lightning to your account

What are the benefits of Help Lightning for surgeons?

In light of the pandemic, and for the foreseeable future, the conventional ways of establishing collaborative partnerships through physical visits are not going to be possible. However, because Help Lightning allows surgeons to collaborate remotely, partnerships can still develop – and more easily than ever before.

Help Lightning can be used as a tool for education, mentorship and instruction – as well as for intraoperative case management. It allows both surgical planning and real-time intraoperative advice.

How does it work?

Watch this video to learn how Help Lightning works. This shows use cases in other industries – it’s every bit as useful with surgical applications and can also be used hands-free. All you need to use Help Lightning is your smartphone and an internet connection, though it can also be used with tablets, desktop computers and smart surgical glasses. 

Download a beginner's guide to Help Lightning here: Help Lightning Basic Training

Virtual help in real-time

Help Lightning uses Merged Reality to blend two real-time video streams – e.g. that of a remote surgical expert and another surgeon that needs help – into a collaborative environment. This Merged Reality allows the expert to virtually reach out and direct real surgical procedures or training.

Use your existing devices

Help Lightning runs on your existing mobile devices (iOS, Android) or a web-browser on laptop and desktop computers.

Surgeons can now provide remote assistance as though they’re working side-by-side. They can telestrate, freeze images, use hand gestures, and even add real objects into the merged reality environment.

Be there instantly

Help Lightning is easy, fast and intuitive.

Once you’re in a merged reality call with a colleague or customer, simply tap the mode to change how you interact. Choose whether you’re giving or receiving help, and start collaborating in seconds. Help Lightning’s unique Merged Reality can add missing visual cues, gestures, and non-verbal communication methods to any session.

Using Help Lightning with smart surgical glasses

Take Help Lightning to the next level by pairing it with smart glasses. This innovation allows the wearer to benefit from the assistance of AI or a third-party while performing surgery. When used in conjunction with Help Lightning, smart glasses mean that another surgeon can see exactly what you are seeing and what you’re doing – and also have their hands superimposed over your field of view.

There are a number of models available from different manufacturers including Vuzix, Zebra, and RealWear.

The Advantage of Remote Expertise

Studies show that adding gestures and nonverbal clues substantially improves the speed of understanding. Furthermore, nonverbal cues are 430% more effective than verbal cues and nonverbal cues make Help Lightning’s combination of verbal and nonverbal communication up to 10 times more effective.

Sources: Journal of Nonverbal Behavior, British Journal of Clinical Psychology

Andre Panossian, MD

Andre Panossian, MD

Plastic, Reconstructive & Burns Surgeon

Shriners Hospital for Children, Pasadena, United States of America


Location information

Hospital address

Shriners Hospital for Children 909 S. Fair Oaks Ave. Pasadena CA 91105 United States of America

Hospital type


Hospital description

Second-Level Hospital (Regional)

This is a teaching hospital


Andre Panossian, MD is a board-certified plastic surgeon practicing in Los Angeles, California. He specializes in facial paralysis reconstruction, neurofibromatosis, pediatric plastic surgery, rhinoplasty, facial aesthetics, and body contouring. Dr. Panossian received his medical education at Tufts University School of Medicine in Boston after graduating at the top of his class at UCLA, receiving Phi Beta Kappa and Summa Cum Laude honors. Upon graduation from medical school, Dr. Panossian was accepted into an elite combined general surgery and plastic surgery residency at the Keck School of Medicine of USC. It was there on the wards of the vaunted LA County Hospital where he honed and mastered his skills.

Following residency, Dr. Panossian completed subspecialty training in craniofacial surgery at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto and Harvard Medical School. He was mentored by Dr. Ron Zuker in the practice of facial paralysis reconstruction. This prestigious fellowship position was available to only one surgeon in the United States. He then traveled to France in order to further refine several cosmetic surgery and craniofacial techniques.

Dr. Panossian is affiliated with various charitable and educational organizations, including Operation Smile and Mending Kids. He serves on the Board of Directors for Mending Kids and the Gondobay Manga Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to the improvement of lives in Sierra Leone. He has been featured as “Top Doctor” in US News and World Report, Pasadena Magazine, and Los Angeles Magazine. Dr. Panossian also served as an expert medical consultant and appeared on The Doctors, Grey’s Anatomy, and Nip/Tuck.

Dr. Panossian is a member of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons and the highly selective American Association of Plastic Surgeons, reserved for only a select group of individuals nationally who have demonstrated excellence in academic plastic surgery. He also holds memberships in several other professional societies including the International Society for the Study of Vascular Anomalies, American College of Surgeons, and the American Society of Reconstructive Microsurgery.

Member information


Andre Panossian

Member type

Individual independent practitioner


Plastic, Reconstructive & Burns Surgeon


  • Aesthetic
  • Breast
  • Cleft lip and palate
  • Craniofacial
  • Head and neck
  • Lower limb
  • Paediatric
  • Upper limb
  • Maxillofacial
  • Microsurgery
  • Paediatric and congenital
  • Acute burns care
  • Post burns reconstruction

Languages spoken

  • Armenian
  • Spanish

Professional affiliations / memberships

  • American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS)
  • American Cleft Palate - Craniofacial Association
  • American Association of Plastic Surgeons (AAPS)
  • American Society of Maxillofacial Surgeons (ASMS)

Conditions treated

  • Cleft lip and Palate
  • Surgical treatment for complications in cleft palate surgery
  • Microtia
  • Craniofacial Syndromes
  • Facial fractures
  • Rhinoplasty and Nasal Reconstruction
  • Head and Neck Reconstruction (neoplasia and traumatic)
  • Excision of Soft tissue Tumors and Skin neoplasia
  • Breast Reconstruction
  • Soft tissue Reconstruction (neoplasia and trauma)
  • Lower extremity Flap reconstruction and salvage
  • Abdominal Reconstruction
  • Liposuction/Fat grafting
  • Microsurgery for free tissue transfer
  • Peripheral Nerve reconstruction
  • Acute burn care and skin grafting
  • Release of chronic Burn contractures and reconstruction
  • Hand reconstruction (soft tissue and bone)
  • Dupuytrens contracture
  • Congenital hand surgery (syndactaly, polydactaly, cleft hand, duplicated thumb)
  • Peripheral nerve decompression (carpal and cubital tunnel)

Equipment used

  • Microscope and micro instruments
  • Facial fracture tray 
  • Hall Drill /K wire driver
  • Hand Fracture tray
  • General Hand Tray
  • Liposuction and fat grafting instruments
  • Dermatome and mesher
  • Craniofacial Tray (Dingman retractor)
  • Headlight
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