This month the technology site, futurism, reported on the clinical trials of the PRECEYES Surgical System, a robot designed to perform surgery on the retina. The promising results of the trial are back and have been published in the journal, Nature Biomedical Engineering.

All this hoopla took place at the University of Oxford’s Nuffield Department of Clinical Neurosciences.

Before going further, note that this is a robot-assisted surgery. The robot doesn’t talk smack to interns or take the easy cases.
The surgeon takes charge of PRECEYES and controls the mobile arm with a joystick. You can swap out various instruments on the arm, and it eliminates the slight tremors that plague even the most steady-handed of humans.

The robot doesn’t talk smack to interns, or take the easy cases.

The trial enlisted 12 patients that each needed a membrane removed from their retina. Six received traditional surgery, and the other half were robot-assisted.

In the robotic procedure, the surgeon slips it through an incision less than 1 mm in diameter. It separates the membrane from the retina, then removes the membrane from the eye, and exits through the same hole. In the surgeries conducted without the device, the surgeon manually uses microsurgical instruments while peering through an OR microscope.

The Results, Please.

All 12 surgeries were successful. In a second phase of the trial, the robot was used on three patients to dissolve vision-threatening under-retina Those surgeries were successful, too.

For more info, read,”10 ways robots are earning their keep in medicine.”