Medical Robots

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The medical robot that was often used in surgeries was introduced in medicine during the early 1980s, first in the field of urology. Robotic arms were introduced and used for medical operations. [1]


In the case of robotically-assisted minimally-invasive surgery, instead of directly moving the instruments, the surgeon uses one of five methods to control the instruments; either a direct telemanipulator or through computer control(2). Robots now are being used in other ways to assist in the medical field. A growing number of hospitals are deploying robots that automate simple operational tasks or provide new ways for physicians to interact with patients beyond the bedside. Healthcare providers say that the robots—or machinery with varying types and degrees of robotic automation—can help reduce costs, make operations more efficient and serve as a marketing tool to position hospitals as early adopters of cutting-edge technology(3). Nearly 400,000 robotic-assisted surgeries were performed in 2012,(4).

Robot Types

XENEX a 5-foot, 2-inch robot that fights bacteria by flashing hospital rooms with ultraviolet light. This light, which comes from a Xenon bulb, damages the cell walls of bacteria, frying their DNA and preventing them from reproducing (6). Human's are not allowed to be in the room while Xenex is working.

SPORT™ (Single Port Robotic Orifice Technology) Surgical System for use in minimally invasive surgery (“MIS”) that is expected to be commercially available in 2015. The SPORT™ Surgical System includes the following: a single-port surgeon controlled robotic platform that includes a 3D vision system and interactive instruments for performing MIS procedures, and a surgeon workstation that provides the surgeon with an interface to the robotic platform for controlling the interactive instruments and providing a 3D endoscopic view of inside a patient’s body during MIS procedures.(7)

RIO® (Robotic arm interactive orthopedic system) Three dimension high-definition visualization and the robotic arm guide the surgeon with visual, tactile, and auditory feedback through each planned and well-defined surgical technique. Tactile resistance is sensed through the robotic arm and instruments to enforce the boundaries of the patient-specific tactile safety zone and enables the surgeon to accurately reproduce the surgical plan.(8)

Current Vendors

  • Intuitive Surgical, Inc.
  • Titan Medical, Inc. a Canadian Company
  • Adept
  • iRobot
  • Fanuc
  • Mako Surgical

The Benefits

  • quick post recovery time
  • cost effectiveness
  • precision and accuracy


  1. Bright Hub Engineering: Medical Robots

2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8.