Robots under research and development for otology can be classified as collaborative (intervention is constrained by the robot but surgeon directly actuates the end-effector), teleoperated (surgeon remotely controls a tool with modification [eg, tremor reduction] by the robot), or autonomous (surgeon monitors the robot performing a task). Current clinical trials focus on more accurate stapes surgery, minimally invasive access to the cochlea, and less traumatic insertion of cochlear implant electrode arrays. Autonomous approaches to major aspects of surgical interventions (eg, mastoidectomy) will likely be late entries to clinical use, given higher cost of regulatory approval and disruption of existing workflow.
Keywords: Cochlear implant; Minimally invasive; Stapes; Surgical robots.
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