The da Vinci Surgical System is a robotic surgical equipment made by Intuitive Surgical Inc. and designed to facilitate complex surgery using a minimally invasive approach. The da Vinci System consists of a surgeon’s console and a patient-side cart with four interactive robotic arms controlled from the console.
Three of the arms are for tools that hold objects, act as a scalpel, scissors etc. The fourth arm is for an endoscopic camera with two lenses that gives the surgeon full stereoscopic vision from the console.
The surgeon sits at the console and looks through two eye holes at a 3-D image of the procedure, meanwhile maneuvering the arms with two foot pedals and two hand controllers. The da Vinci System scales, filters and translates the surgeon’s hand movements into more precise micro-movements of the instruments, which operate through small incisions in the body of patient.
Despite presence of some criticism (concerning estimations of results of surgical operations, immutability of proprietary software, high cost of system etc), as of beginning of 2013, more than 2,000 units of da Vinci Surgical System had been sold worldwide. These robots operate in several thousand hospitals, with an estimated 200,000 surgeries conducted in 2012.
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