Largest ever ring-retractor study? 3967 patient safety study on Galaxy II published

Graceful Study first page Galaxy II

GRACEFUL: Galaxy II Retrospective sAfety and EffeCtivEness Follow Up Long term Study–An Original Article

Spang A. Graceful: Galaxy II Retrospective Safety and Effectiveness Follow Up Long-term Study–An Original Article. J Anaesth Surg Res. 2023;3(1):140-7. DOI:

A new self-retaining retractor was invented to remove loose screw parts, use less plastic, provide superior surgical access and improve patient safety compared to older retractor models. The retractor is designed to be used in a range of specialties from paediatric ENT to inguinal hernia, urology, andrology, orthopaedics, and spinal surgery, in any surgery that retracts delicate and/or solid tissue. This study aims to assess the use of this new retractor in the National Health Service (NHS) in the UK for 4 years since introduction, specifically looking at patient safety as recorded in adverse events and infection rates.

Galaxy II cases performed per NHS trust in the UK

Keywords: Inguinal hernia; Urology; Orthopaedics; Spinal surgery; Treatment; Solid tissue; Self-retaining retractor; Patient safety; ENT; Hernia; Solid tissue; Surgery; National Health Service; Pediatric specialties; Infection rates.

Surgical self-retaining retractors have been without significant improvements for decades. Old devices with loose screws have dominated, and many surgeons have instead opted to use the manual labour of assistants or student to retract tissue; a costly and sometimes even risky approach.

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Out of 3967 patients, 0 (zero) patients had a post op infection caused by Galaxy II, and 0 (zero) intraoperative complications were recorded. The performance is recorded as “Better” than alternative in 100 % of the cases, and 100% of surgeons agreed that Galaxy II retracted tissue safely and effectively.

Surgeon’s feedback were recorded as part of interviews, captured in online systems , and is summarized by representative comments in the following section:
“It is a great product that enhances the surgical outcome, as it removes the problem of the assistant’s boredom/hunger/tiredness from the equation, and it is very easy to use.”

“Self-retaining retractors are very useful, but the Galaxy II indeed took this to the next level. This is better (actually essential now).”

“While it is very similar in shape to the retractor I used previously, the Galaxy II is easier to use, with cam locks rather than a screw mechanism to secure it, allowing single-handed operation.”

“The simple, single-handed operation means that it is easier to adjust and readjust the retractor during a surgery. I can make changes faster and without assistance, which saves time and allows the procedure to be completed more quickly and efficiently.”

“I don’t operate without it [sic GalaxyII] now.”


Galaxy II had no adverse events, is safe and effective to use in any surgery, is an improvement over older retractors and can reduce the risk of MSD in nurses and assistants. The unique range of low profile and light-weight frames and hooks provide better access and increases visibility thus making surgery safer.


Galaxy II is available in 37 countries and used in all specialities to try Galaxy II