da Vinci Robot

The da Vinci robot was first developed based on technology from SRI. Of course today it is much more advanced than where it started from. Today the da Vinci robot is the state-of-the-art in minimally invasive surgical care. It gives the surgeon the controls and feel of open surgery when compared to standard non-robotic minimally invasive surgery. It does that by proivding 3-D images using special dual channel optics and provides articulation it calls an EndoWrist®.
The job of any robot is to make it easier for the human operator doing their job. As such, while the da Vinci helps with some procedures it does not for all minimally invasive procedures. It has proven its usefulness in LRP (Laparoscopic Radical Prostetectomy) by helping less gifted surgeons operate with similar efficiency and performance to experts of the field (which is what robotics should do in the first place). However, for other procedures such as Laparoscopic Cholecystectomy, Nissen Fundoplication, … In some cases such as a Lap. Chole the system canactually add to the time of the operation and costs due to setup and per procedure costs.

Though there are a lot of limitations to today's surgical robots such as da Vinci two facts are inevitable:

1- Surgical robots such as da Vinci will get more capable, add useful features, and become more and more indispensable. One example is the 4th arm of the da Vinci that in essence allows the surgeon to help with his retraction and other tasks that he would use an assistant for. This does not mean that it replaces the assistant but it is a nice feature.
2- New players with innovative technologies will enter the medical robotics market. While Intuitive Surgical's take over of Computer Motion eliminated competition in the U.S. it will not and can not do so for long and definitely not so internationally.

Mazor's SpineAssist robot

www.mazorst.com .

Armstrong Healthcare


Many of today's leading medical robotics:





Related Links


See the latest patent #6,785,593 issued in the field of tele-robotic surgery


Read MedMarket's latest feature article on Tele-Surgery authored by Dr. Ghodoussi