A universal, scalable platform approach for micro-invasive visceral medical interventions
The advantages of minimally invasive surgery have been extensively reported and are significant in comparison with standard open operations. However, surgeons sometimes do not have the appropriate tools for specific movements, as surgical procedures can be difficult due to restricted dexterity in moving an instrument, or because each patient has different internal dimensions and organ shapes. This lack of customization can be easily solved using 3D printing. In addition, many auxiliary signals emerging from the laparoscopic image can be integrated into a manipulator system using machine learning techniques. Potential advantages of this new approach might include semiautonomous tracking of the endoscopic camera, or even semiautonomous control of medical devices. The aim of this project was therefore to create an automated design process for manipulator systems to be integrated into a “single port overtube” (SPOT) for minimally invasive surgery.
Using selective laser sintering to produce the prototypes and MATLAB software to perform the automated process of designing the manipulators, significant benefits have been observed in comparison with conventional surgical techniques in a randomized study in a porcine model.
This project has been developed together with the Chair of Microtechnology and Medical Device Technology, led by Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Dipl.-Ing. Tim C. Lueth of the Technical University of Munich.