UWE Bristol's RAFS fracture reduction robot
For over 5 years, the Bristol team has been working on a new robot, the RAFS (robot-assisted fracture surgery system) to better manage complex fractures, which was recently releazed.
"A robotic system that could help surgeons put joint fractures back together using a minimally invasive approach, is to be the first robot-assisted system designed to deal with this problem.
The system is being developed at Bristol Robotics Laboratory (BRL) in collaboration with a leading orthopaedic surgeon, a company specialising in orthopaedic devices and University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trusts. Bristol Robotics Laboratory is a collaboration between UWE Bristol (the University of the West of England) and the University of Bristol.
The project, led by Dr Sanja Dogramadzi (Reader in Robotics at BRL), has initially received £642k research funding from the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Invention for Innovation (i4i) Programme in 2013 to develop this ground breaking device. Dr Dogramadzi is working with Professor Roger Atkins (Orthopaedic Surgeon at UH Bristol) and MatOrtho, a UK leading medical device company."
The Bristol team’s surgical system combines:
- State-of-the-art 3D imaging;
- Pattern recognition; and
CT scans of the bones are ‘interpreted’ by a mathematical algorithm which works out the exact displacement and rotation needed for each fragment to be put back together in exactly the right place.
The solution to this 3D puzzle is the starting point for the minimally invasive surgical robotic system that repositions the fragments under the surgeon’s supervision.
Source: SCITECH Europa, EPSRC, Dogramadzi et al.