Robotic surgery – innovation at its finest

Written by Bruce Hughes on . Posted in Computer Innovations

The medical field is by far the domain that is most in need of innovation and that has, so far, lived up to this expectation. Robotic surgery is an undeniable proof of how much technology has advanced and what an important help it can provide to health care. Although it is not used at a large scale and robotically assisted surgery appears to be a yet unexplored terrain, the method was first used back in 1985, when the Unimation Puma 200 was used in a brain biopsy for the placement of a needle. After that, PROBOT, a medical robot developed at Imperial College in London, performed prostatic surgery at Guy’s and St Thomas’ Hospital, which was the first pure robotic surgery. Today, medical robots are used in a variety of applications and they bring major benefits into the field, from the possibility of remote surgery to unmanned surgery.

Technological advances have always aided humanity to overcome important and sometimes very difficult problems, offering excellent solutions in a variety of fields and computer assisted surgery is perhaps the best example. From general surgery, cardiothoracic surgery and cardiology and electrophysiology to gastrointestinal surgery, gynecology and orthopedics, as well as neurosurgery and pediatrics, medical robots and miniature robotics have a variety of uses and can help with multiple repairs and minimally invasive surgeries, especially those where anatomical access is difficult. Furthermore, this is a field where innovation is continuous and physicians and specialists all over the world are constantly trying to design and develop better and more sophisticated medical robots that can perform a wider range of surgeries with higher precision and better results. One of the biggest advantages of robotically assisted surgery is the fact that any such surgery can be performed remotely, which means patients can be operated on by surgeons that are half way around the globe, thus benefiting from the professional experience and expertise of the best doctors, regardless of their location.

Medical robots are hi-tech systems that register every single step of the surgery, which has the added benefit of significantly reducing the risk of medical negligence. Apart from the fact that there is an exact log of entries, these robots provide great accuracy and greatly reduce the risk for hospital acquired infections, which is a very common reason for clinical negligence claims. On the other hand, medical robots are very hard to operate and a lot of training goes into surgeons being able to use them flawlessly. This increases the risk of negligent treatment claims, based on faulty or improper use of medical equipment. You don’t even need the best medical negligence solicitors to be able to file such a claim and have solid grounds for it. With any innovation, there come risks and the case of medical robots and computer assisted surgery is no exception. However, the improvements brought along by this particular technological advancement have definitely changed the face of health care.