UK publication “The Engineer” reports on how robots are an essential component for any Natural Orifice Transluminal Endoscopic Surgery (NOTES). The full article can be found here.
The author comments; “While endoscopes are now commonly used to see inside the body via natural orifices, they don’t have the mobility necessary to navigate as precisely as NOTES requires, and their mechanical structure, although fine for mounting a passive camera on to, isn’t suitable as a mount for surgical instruments; these need to be mounted on a firm platform, which doesn’t move when the instruments press against or cut into tissues.
Two UK teams are currently working on robots for NOTES. At Imperial College London, a team from the departments of surgery, computing and biomedical engineering, funded by the Wellcome Trust, is working on iSnake, a combined surgical robot and imaging device. Meanwhile, Bristol-based OC Robotics is developing its snake-arm robots, which are used as remote manipulators in hazardous areas, to work within the human body, aided by a grant from the Technology Strategy Board.
Incidentally, when it comes to acronyms this is either a step too far or brilliant…you decide: iSNAKE: imaging Sensor Navigated And Kinematically Enhanced.
Source: The Engineer, medlatest staff