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Laparoscopic surgery performed by a robot without human assistance – TechCrunch

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Laparoscopic surgery performed by a robot without human assistance – TechCrunch

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Johns Hopkins researchers released a report this week noting that their Smart Tissue Autonomous Robot (STAR) system performed laparoscopic surgery on pig tissue without human guidance. The surgery, which involves connecting two intestinal ends, has been successfully performed on animals, with a “significantly better” result than those performed by humans, according to the team.

There are a number of hurdles to overcome in order to fully automate a procedure like this. Chief among them is the fact that the malleability of tissues (human, porcine, and others) gives it a rather unpredictable nature that can be extremely difficult to program.

Human surgeons have long learned to work with it, but it can be much trickier for their robotic counterparts. The robotic system builds on a 2016 system that has already done a good job performing the surgery on pig patients, but required assistance, including human guidance and a large incision. Three-dimensional machine vision was used to create an algorithm for STAR’s guidance system.

“What makes the STAR special is that it is the first robotic system to plan, adapt and execute a surgical plan in soft tissue with minimal human intervention,” said the lead author. article, Hamed Saeidi, in a statement.

The system’s creators believe the technology could be used to perform such procedures with greater accuracy and repeatability. There has been a massive increase in interest and funding around robotic surgeries over the past few decades for their ability to help level the playing field for access to what have traditionally been considered highly specialized surgical procedures. .

Laparoscopic surgery performed by a robot without human assistance – TechCrunch

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