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Robotics

Robotic Surgical Assistant Ready within 5 Years

21 years, 2 months ago

9910  0
Posted on Dec 04, 2002, 5 a.m. By Bill Freeman

Researchers at an army training hospital in France have unveiled plans for a robotic surgical assistant capable of helping a human surgeon carry out tricky procedures in remote locations. Sending out specialized surgeons to remote locations is impractical as there are not enough to go around and it is simply too expensive.

Researchers at an army training hospital in France have unveiled plans for a robotic surgical assistant capable of helping a human surgeon carry out tricky procedures in remote locations. Sending out specialized surgeons to remote locations is impractical as there are not enough to go around and it is simply too expensive. To overcome this problem a general surgeon is usually mobilized, however, they can only perform roughly 80% of procedures. Thus, if a soldier requires a specialized operation that the general surgeon cannot perform, he has to be evacuated. This is where the specialized surgeon and his remote robotic assistant, dubbed Maestro (Multidisciplinary Assistant for Enhanced Surgical Telerobotic) will step in. The general surgeon gives the patient's details to the specialist, who then programs Maestro to stop the surgeon's instruments from making any inappropriate manoeuvres. "For example, if the surgeon is meant to open a bone without touching a nerve, the surgeon's drill, connected to the assistant, will stop as soon as it approaches the nerve in question," says project leader, Professor Michel Desgeorges, head of neurosurgery at the army training hospital in Val-de-Grace, Paris. Maestro is expected to be available within 5 years.

SOURCE/REFERENCE: Reported by www.reutershealth.com on the 13th November 2002

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