Illinois Patent of the Month – January 2021

The first robot-assisted surgery took place in 1985 when a robot guided needle placement in a neurosurgical biopsy. Robot-assisted surgeries provide greater precision and reduce human error. Spinal surgery is a complex procedure requiring skill and steady hands. Complications can arise at any point throughout, so any method to ease the process is welcome. Difficulties with securing tissue have been a nuisance throughout spinal surgical procedures.  P-Tech, LLC wanted to reduce these difficulties and has introduced the latest component of robotic surgery.

P-Tech developed a robotic device combined with an imaging device, programmable computer, and display monitor. The imaging device will take a tomographic scan of the spinal column and display it on the monitor in view of the surgeon. Programming the robotic arm beforehand will allow for small precise incisions. Smaller incisions usually reduce scarring and healing time. The robotic arms can hold the tissue apart to make space for surgery. This same tissue retractor component could be applied to bones or vertebrates as needed. Additional programming will direct the robotic arm to apply a variety of sutures or staples to secure the tissue after surgery. This robotic arm makes surgery easier by taking away some of the manual labor and ensuring precision throughout the procedure. 

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