Surgical skill assessment with robotic technology

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Supervisor:
Dr. Haidegger Tamás Péter
Department of Control Engineering and Information Technology

The evolution of medicine is basically characterized by the intention to reduce invasiveness. This trend can also be observed in the field of surgery. Since the first successful laparoscopic procedure, surgical techniques have significantly changed, the so-called minimally invasive surgery has become widespread, and over the past two decades – due to the appearance of various robotic surgical systems – robotic technology has also gained an important role. The development of new procedural techniques and surgical tools challenges the surgeons to acquire and maintain specific psychomotor skills, which are crutial for sufficient perfomance. Therefore great emphasis is put on surgical and robotic education outside the operating room. Satisfying the need for the education and evaluation of surgical skills, several anatomical models, simulation systems and predefined surgical tasks were developed. Despite the obvious advantages of these educational tools, mostly due to financial reasons, the implementation into medical practice is not always possible. Thus the objective evaluation of surgical skills is still not unified and valid. This specific problem raises the need for an affordable, validated system that incorporates newly developed protocols and tools suitable for the objective evaluation of surgical skills. Over the course of my work, I conducted a prospective study, which aimed to evaluate a system, specially designed for surgical skill assessment and improvement as well. This complex task involved the calibration of already existing devices, the design and production of new devices, and the determination of surgical tasks in compliance with real surcigal interventions.

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