"The future of surgery is not about blood and guts; the future of surgery is about bits and bytes.”
/Dr. Richard Satava/

Saturday, March 19, 2011

BioRobotics at the upcoming EMBC

  • Paper Submission Deadline: March 26, 2011
  • Notification of Acceptance: June 6, 2011
The conference will take place at the Boston Marriott Copley Place Hotel in Boston, Massachusetts, USA. August 30 through September 3, 2011. The conference main topic is "Integrating technology and medicine for a healthier tomorrow". It will cover diverse topics ranging from biomedical engineering to healthcare technologies to medical and clinical applications. The conference program will consist of invited plenary lectures, symposia, workshops, invited sessions and oral and poster sessions of unsolicited contributions, just as in the previous years. To learn more please visit the IEEE EMBC 2011website.
Conference Tracks within Biomechanics and Robotics Theme are:
  • 1) Orthotic Biomechanics and Robotics
  • 2) Prosthetic Biomechanics and Robotics: Artificial Organs/Limbs
  • 3) Rehabilitation Robotics and Biomechanics: Therapy, Assistance and Clinical Evaluation
  • 4) Human-Robot Interaction and Robot-aided Living for a Healthier Tomorrow
  • 5) Sports, Exercise and Games: Biomechanics and Robotics
  • 6) Robot-aided Surgery
  • 7) Biologically Inspired Robotics and Micro-(bio)robotics
  • 8) New Technologies and Methodologies in Medical Robotics and Biomechanics
  • 9) Neural Control of Movement and Robotics Applications
  • 10) Applied Musculoskeletal Models and Human Movement Analysis

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

A surgeon's view on CIS, presentation at SPIE

The annual SPIE Medical Imaging conference was held in Orlando this February. It featured a good amount of technical talks, lectures and poster presentations. One of the highlights of the conference week was Duke Herrell’s (Vanderbilt University) keynote titled “Engineering solutions in the operating room: a surgeon’s perspective”. The abstract did not reveal too much: “While the promise of genomic biology and  “personalized” medicine may revolutionize disease care and diagnosis in the coming decades, the operating room continues to offer a fertile ground for innovation.
Engineering solutions such as image-guided surgery (IGS), robotics, functional and tumor targeted imaging, and tissue ablation hold promise to potentially revolutionize surgery and improve patient outcomes. Key to the development of successful solutions is a close collaboration between development engineers and surgeons. Utilizing a trans-institutional collaboration of engineers and surgeons, solutions such as incorporation of IGS into robotic and kidney surgery, advanced robotic and ablative technologies, and new imaging modalities are being explored at our institution and will be reviewed.”, but in fact, the talk gave a good overview of the emerging technologies (pros and cons), such as:

He summarized the future needs of the field, innovations deriving from the close cooperation of surgeons and engineers:
  • Smart instrumentation (e.g. tissue-specific markers)
  • Patient specific simulation and education
  • Miniaturization of instruments with autonomous functions
  • Imaging integration (augmented reality).
Probably the best part was how he talked about surgeons’ adaptation to new technologies. He compared it to adaptation to defeat or death, described with the U-shaped curve by psychology. According to [Wilson 2006], the characteristics of newly adopted surgical technologies are:
  • Compatibility of current practice, support by available facilities
  • Surgeons can observe procedure
  • Modification of an existing procedure, or easy to learn
  • Offered for trial period before fully embraced
  • Case volume and expected demand  justify learning required
  • Procedure will appeal to patients.
He compared advanced surgical technology to drones for the military, and concluded with the wish to have the very best “pilot and plain” duet for surgery.