The goal of this project was to improve Canadian surgical practices by developing a new microsurgical robot that could perform neural surgery with improved precision and spatial resolution. The resulting product – the neuroArm – represents substantial improvements in neural surgery delivery. The machine includes features like ambidexterity, haptic sense (sense of touch) and tremor filters that eliminate motion seen under the microscope. neuroArm offers advances such as reduced surgeon fatigue, smaller cranial openings, and improved performance by all surgeons. The first surgery using neuroArm on a human subject was successfully conducted in May 2008, and since then more than 30 surgeries have occurred using the neuroArm.
Surgical Robotics: A review and neurosurgical prototype development (in Neurosurgery, 2004) – http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15028126
This report outlines the development of project neuroArm. Recognizing that developments in microscopy, frameless navigation, and intraoperative imaging had extended surgeons to the limits of their dexterity and stamina, project neuroArm sought to overcome these limitations by introducing new robotic technology into the operating room. This report explains how neuroArm allows surgeons to target and operate on tumors previously considered inoperable, and to practice rare and difficult surgeries prior to operating on patients in real life.