13 August 2013

A blood clot after a stroke will be removed by a robot

A robot vacuum cleaner has been developed to clean the brain from blood clots

Copper newsA team of engineers and doctors from Vanderbilt University (Nashville, Tennessee) has developed a robotic surgical system with which it is possible to effectively and minimally traumatic removal of blood clots from brain tissues resulting from hemorrhage, according to a press release from the university (Robot uses steerable needles to treat brain clotts).

The work has already been accepted for publication in the IEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering journal.

The system consists of two hollow needles – a straight outer and a curved inner. The diameter of both does not exceed one millimeter, but the outer is wider than the inner. When a CT scanner determines the location of the clot, the neurosurgeon selects the optimal point on the skull and sets the robot the angle at which to insert the catheter. The neurosurgeon also selects an internal needle suitable for curvature, starting from the size and shape of the thrombus, attaches an aspirator to its end and places it in an external tube.

Through a tiny hole drilled in the skull, the robot inserts a straight needle into the brain at a given angle until it reaches the outer surface of the clot. Then a curved inner needle is pushed out of it, which penetrates directly into the clot. The aspirator is turned on and the contents of the blood clot are sucked out. The robot controls and regulates the direction of movement of the tiny "vacuum cleaner". Tests on a gelatin model have shown that such a device can remove 92 percent of the contents of a clot.

Testing the robot on a gelatin model of a blood clot. Photos of the authorsHowever, the authors have not yet coped with the difficulty that arises at the end of the process – when almost all the blood is sucked out, under the pressure of the surrounding tissues, the thrombus area sticks together and it becomes impossible to remove the remnants of thickened blood near its borders.

In the future, the authors plan to solve this problem with the help of ultrasound imaging and a computer model of brain tissue deformation.

Portal "Eternal youth" http://vechnayamolodost.ru13.08.2013

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