[Robots in urology-an analysis of current and future devices]

The monopoly of robotic surgical devices of the last 15 years will end in 2019 when key patents of Intuitive Surgical expire. Thus, we can expect an interesting competitive situation in the coming years. Based on personal experience with robot-assisted surgery since 2001, we conducted a search of the current literature together with a search of relevant patents in this field. Finally, we visited the websites of manufacturers of existing and future robotic surgical devices with possible applications in urology. Such devices have to prove that they meet the high-quality standard of the current Da Vinci series (SI, X, XI). For this purpose, we propose to classify the main features of the different devices, such as type of console (closed/open), arrangement of robotic arms (single/multiple carts/attached to operating room table), type of three-dimensional videosystem (by mirror/ocular/using polarizing glasses) or degrees of freedom (DOF) of end effectors (5 vs. 7 DOF). In the meantime, there are also robotic systems used in endourology: Avicenna Roboflex® and the AquaBeam® system for robot-assisted aquablation therapy of the prostate. While Roboflex® improves the ergonomics of flexible ureteroscopy-similar to the Da Vinci robot, AquaBeam® may for the first time eliminate the surgeon, who might only be needed to manage severe postoperative bleeding.

Der Urologe. Ausg. A. 2018 Jul 20 [Epub ahead of print]

J J Rassweiler, A S Goezen, M C Rassweiler-Seyfried, E Liatsikos, T Bach, J-U Stolzenburg, J Klein

Klinik für Urologie und Kinderurologie, SLK Kliniken Heilbronn, Akademisches Lehrkrankenhaus der Universität Heidelberg, Am Gesundbrunnen 20, 74074, Heilbronn, Deutschland. ., Klinik für Urologie und Kinderurologie, SLK Kliniken Heilbronn, Akademisches Lehrkrankenhaus der Universität Heidelberg, Am Gesundbrunnen 20, 74074, Heilbronn, Deutschland., Urologische Klinik, Univeristätsklinikum Mannheim, Mannheim, Deutschland., Department of Urology, University of Patras, Patras, Griechenland., Urologisches Zentrum Hamburg, Asklepios Klinik Harburg, 21075, Hamburg, Deutschland., Urologische Universitätsklinik Leipzig, Medizinische Fakultät der Universität Leipzig, Leipzig, Deutschland., Urologische Klinik, Universität Ulm, Ulm, Deutschland.

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