Scientists blur the line between science-fiction and reality.
Researchers from the University of Utah have developed a robot to assist brain surgeons in the long, delicate process of cutting through the skull. The project has met with such success that soon the procedure may no longer be described as lengthy, according to a report from Futurism.com:
A robot that the team is developing is able to reduce the time it takes to complete a complicated procedure by 50 times. According to CNN, the robot can reduce the time it takes to drill into the skull from two hours to two-and-a-half minutes.
The robot is loaded with computerized tomography (CT) scans of the patient and uses the precise images to locate the best spots to cut and keep clear of nerves or veins. In an interview with CNN, lead neurosurgeon William Couldwell claimed:
“We can program [it] to drill the bone out safely just by using the patient’s CT criteria,” he said. “It basically machines out the bone.”
These robots will not only save time, but they will save money as well, Futurism reports. Teams of surgeons will spend less time in surgery and the patient will spend less time under anesthesia, which can have risks of its own.
Often patients must stay awake for a brain operation; these robots will also help make harrowing ordeals such as this more tolerable.