Surgical precision is essential in the healthcare field. It enables minimally invasive interventions, improves patient outcomes, reduces recovery time and lowers costs. However, technological advancements are pushing current limits of human capabilities. This has led to the development of various technologies that are expected to enable more precise surgeries in the future.
Lasers are currently used in many surgical specialties to perform procedures like tissue ablation and coagulation. The focused energy of the laser minimizes damage to healthy tissues, thereby maximizing surgical efficiency. However, the complexity of operating with a laser requires high skill and experience. Furthermore, if not properly used, lasers can cause thermal injuries that may lead to complications such as deep burns and hypertrophic scarring.
Robotic systems offer improved dexterity and 3D visualization, which facilitates more precise surgical intervention. They allow physicians to perform complex maneuvers that are not possible with manual surgery, thereby improving accuracy and reducing surgeon fatigue. Additionally, they can be used in tight spaces that are difficult for physicians to access with traditional instruments.
MRI scans provide detailed images of internal structures and enable preoperative assessment and planning, enhancing surgical precision. Additionally, artificial intelligence applications are being developed to assist surgeons with decision-making and intraoperative guidance, enabling more accurate and personalized interventions.
Combining robotic precision and laser technology opens up new clincial fields of application, such as robot-assisted laser soldering (RLTS). RLTS can achieve rapid and accurate tissue bonding while maintaining high and uniform bond strength throughout the incision. However, the temperature control in the RLTS process is critical, since over-heating causes thermal injury and tissue scarring, while under-heating leads to insufficient bonding.