A Look into the Future of Robotic Telesurgery with Asensus’s Luna Technology

Asensus Surgical, a North Carolina-based company, is leading the way in surgical robotics with its recent innovation in robotic telesurgery, known as Luna robotic platform.

On February 21, 2023, Asensus announced the launch of “Luna,” which is set to begin a new era of next-generation digital surgical procedures.  

As technology continues to advance at a rapid pace, so does the ability of surgeons to perform complex procedures remotely with greater precision and accuracy than ever before.
The introduction of advanced surgical procedures such as laparoscopy and minimally invasive procedures have greatly improved patient outcomes and recovery times.

Now, the future of surgery is near with the emergence of robotic telesurgery.

Read the complete story to get a glimpse of robotic telesurgery platform developed by Asensus and the potential of this technology in evolving healthcare.

What is robotic telesurgery?

Robotic telesurgery is an emerging technology that is transforming the field of surgery with the ability to operate remotely on patients using robotic arms and advanced sensors.

Advancements in telecommunication and robotic surgery have made telesurgery a promising and feasible option for improving access to surgical care.

With the concept of remote surgery, surgeons can operate on patients from a distance, reducing the need for travel, delivering care to underserved populations, and decreasing the risk of infections.

For instance, a surgeon sitting at a console, miles away from their patient, can expertly guide robotic arms to perform a complex surgical procedure with accuracy and precision.

Moreover, robotic telesurgery has now evolved into a new phase known as performance-guided surgery, with the integration of augmented intelligence and machine learning.

This cutting-edge technology provides a digital surgical assistant to all surgeons, regardless of their skill level and experience.

Performance-guided surgery assisted by the robotic infrastructure can provide real-time monitoring and feedback during surgical procedures.

By integrating computer vision, machine learning, and clinical intelligence, the performance-guided surgery system can improve surgical precision, reduce errors, and enhance patient outcomes.

This technology is designed to provide consistently superior results by guiding improved decision-making, enriched collaboration, and enhanced predictability for all surgeons, regardless of their skill level and experience.

According to Anthony Fernando, president and CEO of Asensus, the key to successful telesurgery is the digitization of the interface between the surgeon and the patient, which is made possible through the Internet of Medical Things (IoMT).

The Internet of Medical Things (IoMT) is a growing infrastructure of connected medical devices, software applications, health systems, and services that generate, collect, analyze, or transmit health data or images.

IoMT can facilitate streamlined workflows, more accurate diagnoses, fewer mistakes, and lower costs of care. It can also provide the necessary framework for telesurgery to be performed seamlessly and effectively.

Furthermore, Asensus Surgical's Senhance Surgical System, with its Intelligent Surgical Unit (ISU), has become a key player in telesurgery technology.

The ISU is the first and only surgical system approved by the FDA that is integrated with augmented intelligence and machine vision.

These features enable the ISU to identify and understand anatomy and improve imaging analytics for 3D capabilities in surgeries.

Moreover, with the advanced integration of augmented intelligence, ISU can also perform as a virtual assistant to enhance surgeons’ ability while using real-time information from the surgical field.

The Luna Launch

The launch of the Luna surgical platform reveals that it is an upgrade on Asensus’s Senhance surgical system and paves the way for successful performance-guided surgery.

Anthony Fernando, the president and CEO of Asensus, said, “The system is smart. Even if you tell it to move left or right, it moves very safely, with significant knowledge and awareness. We call it performance-guided surgery as opposed to robotic surgery.”

The Luna surgical system utilizes real-time intraoperative clinical intelligence that provides the surgeon with critical insights and data during the surgery.

Furthermore, a secure cloud platform is responsible for applying machine learning algorithms to deliver clinical insights.

The Luna surgical technology has been designed and developed since 2020 and has three intricate components that work together to provide precise and efficient surgical assistance:

•    The first component of Luna is three or four manipulative robotic arms that are designed to hold surgical instruments and engineered to mimic the movements of a human arm with greater precision and accuracy.

These robotic arms are controlled by a surgeon console, which allows the surgeon to manipulate the arms with a high degree of dexterity.

•    The second major component of Luna is the surgeon console, which is the central control hub for the entire system and allows the surgeon to operate the robotic arms with precision and ease.

The console typically features a high-definition display, a set of hand controls, and a foot pedal for controlling the robotic arms.

•    Luna also includes a set of surgical instruments that are attached to the end of the robotic arms, which are interchangeable and can be easily swapped during surgery as needed.

These instruments are specifically designed to perform a wide range of surgical procedures, from minimally invasive surgeries to more complex procedures.

Furthermore, Fernando also revealed that Luna will be available commercially till 2025. He added, “A full instrument set will be included with Luna to offer monopolar energy, bipolar energy, and passive instrumentation.”

Moreover, Luna will be trained to perform surgeries in gynecology, urology, bariatric, and colorectal.

In Fernando’s words, “Luna provides best-in-class stability, strength, and precision for the surgeon to be able to cut, dissect and move internal anatomy around without experiencing vibrations.”

To adapt to varying force requirements in surgeries such as bariatric and pediatric, Luna utilizes proprietary haptic feedback and force-sensing mechanical components to measure incision force in real time.

This feature allows the surgical system to control the instrument appropriately and ensure that it does not exert an excessive lateral force on the patient's organ during the procedure.

Furthermore, Luna employs force sensors at the end of each arm to measure all six-sphere coordinates, achieving a digital fulcrum point.

This allows the surgical system to identify the point of invasion into the organs as well as display those points in 3D space, which assists the built-in surgical instruments.

Moreover, the Intelligent Surgical Unit, situated in a compact box connected to Luna, provides data on numerous past surgeries and optimal procedures to the operative unit, which includes robots and surgeons.

Anthony Fernando claimed, “We have first-hand knowledge, shaped by thousands of real-world procedures and years of interactions with surgeons and hospitals, of what the market needs, which is much more than just a robot.”

The previous statement provides insights into the surgical robotics market, which is expected to grow with significant advanced in technology as developed by Asensus.

According to data insights of BIS Research, the global surgical robotics market, valued at $8.70 billion in 2022, is anticipated to reach $18.41 billion by 2032, witnessing a CAGR of 7.78% during the forecast period 2022-2032.

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With continued advancements in robotic technology, communication infrastructure, and artificial intelligence, the potential for remote surgery using robotic telesurgery is becoming increasingly realistic.

With continued research and development, robotic telesurgery will become a more common practice in the years to come, further improving the way we approach surgical interventions and ultimately improving patient health and wellbeing.

Interested to know more about the advancing technologies in your industry vertical? Get the latest market studies and insights from BIS Research. Connect with us at hello@bisresearch.com to learn and understand more.

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