[Robotic and systems technology for advanced endoscopic procedures].Ann Ital Chir. 2001 Jul-Aug; 72(4):467-72.AI
The advent of endoscopic techniques changed surgery in many regards. This paper intends to describe an overview about technologies to facilitate endoscopic surgery. The systems described have been developed for the use in general surgery, but an easy application also in other fields of endoscopic surgery seems realistic. The introduction of system technology and robotic technology enables today to design a highly ergonomic solo-surgery platform. This consists of a system of devices for endoscopic surgery (HF, light source, etc...) with which the surgeon interacts directly, positioning systems for optic and instruments that the surgeon drives as the likes without assistance, and a chair to increase the comfort of the surgeon during surgery. The system of endoscopic devices named OREST (Dornier, München) designed already in 1992 opened the way to a number of systems available today that allow to the surgeon a direct control of the instrumentation. A considerable step ahead in endoscopic technology is the introduction of robotic technology to design assisting systems for solo-surgery and microsurgical instrument manipulators. Results of a number of experimental trials on combinations of different positioning devices are presented and commented. A further step in the employment of robotic technology is the design of "master-slave manipulators" to provide the surgeon with additional degrees of freedom of instrumentation. In 1996 a first prototype of an endoscopic manipulator system, named ARTEMIS, designed in cooperation with the Research Center in Karlsruhe, could be used in experimental applications. Clinical use of the system, however, will require further development of the arm mechanics and the control system. The combination with the implementation of telecommunication technology will open new frontiers, such as teleconsulting, teleassistance and telemanipulation.