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Meet the medical robot that performs surgery better than humans

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Meet the medical robot that performs surgery better than humans
Researchers have taken robots and robotics to a new level in the operating theatre. They show, for the first time, how a supervised, autonomous robot can perform surgery on soft tissue in live pigs more effectively than a surgeon’s hands, or even a surgeon assisted by a robot.
The team, from the Sheikh Zayed Institute for Pediatric Surgical Innovation, Children’s National Health System, Washington, DC, describes the Smart Tissue Autonomous Robot (STAR) and how it outperformed human surgeons operating on soft tissue in a Science Translational Medicine paper.
They tested STAR against manual surgery, laparoscopy (keyhole surgery), and robot-assisted surgery with the da Vinci Surgical System on dead tissue and also in a procedure called “anastomosis,” which involved connecting the tubular loops of the intestines in live pigs.
The researchers note that the “supervised autonomous surgery offered by the STAR system was superior” to the other methods.
STAR is a supervised robot that effectively removes the surgeon’s hands from the procedure, and instead, the surgeon supervises the robot’s autonomously planned and performed stitching or suturing.
Soft tissue is tissue that connects, supports, or surrounds organs and other body structures like tendons, skin, fat, muscle, nerves, blood vessels, and ligaments.
In the United States alone, over 44.5 million soft tissue surgeries are performed every year; 1 million of these are for anastomosis.

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