NASA's Robot Surgeon

April 20, 2006

robot_surgeon.jpg NASA has been testing a remote-controlled robot surgeon in an undersea laboratory off the coast of Florida. For one exercise, surgical researchers 1,250 miles away sent commands to the robot, which managed to successfully suture a badly damaged vein in the wounded arm of a "patient simulator." With the possibility of human injury on future Lunar and Martian outposts, NASA is hoping that the use of surgical robots and "telemedicine" will delay the need for medical doctor astronauts. The article states that the robots should eventually be able to perform "most operations." I hope "most operations" includes "the surgery required to repair an unfeeling robot doctor's horrible mistakes." Oh, and hopefully collagen injections too.
(Photo of da Vinci surgical system)

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