Dexterous miniature robot for advanced minimally invasive surgery

Surg Endosc. 2011 Jan;25(1):119-23. doi: 10.1007/s00464-010-1143-6. Epub 2010 Jun 12.


This study demonstrates the feasibility of using a miniature robot to perform complex, single-incision, minimal access surgery. Instrument positioning and lack of triangulation complicate single-incision laparoscopic surgery, and open surgical procedures are highly invasive. Using minimally invasive techniques with miniature robotic platforms potentially offers significant clinical benefits. A miniature robot platform has been designed to perform advanced laparoscopic surgery with speed, dexterity, and tissue-handling capabilities comparable to standard laparoscopic instruments working through trocars. The robotic platform includes a dexterous in vivo robot and a remote surgeon interface console. For this study, a standard laparoscope was mounted to the robot to provide vision and lighting capabilities. In addition, multiple robots could be inserted through a single incision rather than the traditional use of four or five different ports. These additional robots could provide capabilities such as tissue retraction and supplementary visualization or lighting. The efficacy of this robot has been demonstrated in a nonsurvival cholecystectomy in a porcine model. The procedure was performed through a single large transabdominal incision, with supplementary retraction being provided by standard laparoscopic tools. This study demonstrates the feasibility of using a dexterous robot platform for performing single-incision, advanced laparoscopic surgery.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cholecystectomy, Laparoscopic / instrumentation
  • Cholecystectomy, Laparoscopic / methods
  • Equipment Design
  • Feasibility Studies
  • Laparoscopy / methods*
  • Miniaturization
  • Robotics / instrumentation*
  • Sus scrofa
  • Swine
  • User-Computer Interface