Robot Performs Laparoscopic Surgery

3rd March 2022

Autonomous robotic laparoscopic surgery for intestinal anastomosis (Saeidi et al, 2022)

 

“In four experiments on pig tissues, the robot excelled at suturing two ends of intestine—one of the most intricate and delicate tasks in abdominal surgery”

This is a landmark paper that describes the development of a completely autonomous robot capable of performing an in vivo small bowel anastomosis.

They review their methodology, first using phantom small bowel tissue such as would be used in a simulation laboratory. They then progressed to a porcine model and they report the first 4 anastomoses performed by the robot with some human supervision. The robot was able to place 83% of anastomotic sutures autonomously. The average time for the robot to complete an anastomosis was 60 minutes.

This is a highly impactful article and a harbinger of what can be done in the future. It is now ready for clinical evaluation and would be a perfect case for applying the IDEAL Framework. Due to the use of machine learning in the development of their device, the upcoming DECIDE-AI guideline, inspired by IDEAL, would also be relevant.

  1. Science Robotics – Autonomous robotic laparoscopic surgery for intestinal anastomosis (science.org)
  2. John Hopkins University – ROBOT PERFORMS FIRST LAPAROSCOPIC SURGERY WITHOUT HUMAN HELP

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