How has the addition of robots in OTs revolutionized the Healthcare Industry?
When the first industrial robot Unimate was introduced, in the factory of General Motors in 1961, the manufacturing world was revolutionized forever. Similarly, when the DaVinci surgical robot from Intuitive Surgical got it’s clearance from FDA, back in 2000, it marked the beginning of a revolution in the Healthcare Industry.
While the hospitals and doctors were hesitant in the beginning about the ROI of these surgical robots, now, they are investing heavily in them to improve the technological infrastructure of their operating rooms. These robots are allowing them to carry out more surgical procedures, in less time and with lower failure rates. Also, the investors are pumping billions of dollars in this technology and now, there are more than 100 different surgical robots from 50 plus companies and start-ups around the globe.
Millions of surgeries have been carried out using these robots as the benefits are unparalleled. The surgical robots allow doctors to place the medical instruments with perfect orientation inside the affected organ, ensuring extremely high accuracy in the surgery to the extent of almost cent percent in cardiac surgeries. The small size, complicated locations and complex shapes of tracts in human anatomy pose major ergonomic challenges in the conventional OTs that these robots successfully eliminate and hence, considerably increase the survival rates.
With these robots, a cut as small as a keyhole is made in the patient’s body and three thin robotic arms are sent down. Generally, one of them holds the camera while the other two hold the surgical instruments. These robotic arms replicate the motions of the surgeon’s wrists by reading movements through a motion sensor. The camera provides a 3D image of the organ and the surgeon can carry out the required procedure through a console which is 20-30 feet away from the patient.
The console gives the surgeon great ergonomic benefits. The robotic arms eliminate any unwanted jitters or hand movements of the surgeon, giving steady and accurate instrument movements inside the patient’s body. The keyhole size incision ensures a 450% faster recovery time for the patient.
Currently, surgical robots are being used to carry out Interventional Cardiology, Gynecology, Orthopedics, Urological and Neurological surgeries.
The major challenges for new start-ups are that, the cost of developing these robots is at least a few hundred million dollars and the individual approvals, from health regulatory organizations of different countries, slow down the process of finally selling and getting business. Hence, the final product bought by the hospitals has a price upwards of $1 million. Recently, Johnson & Johnson and Google’s parent company, Alphabet, have joined hands to form a new company, Verb Surgical, with an aim to manufacture cheaper, smarter and smaller robotic-assisted surgical systems than presently available.
Though these challenges exist, according to BIS Research analysis, approximately 1.2 million robot-assisted surgeries were carried out in 2017, and in 2025, this number is expected to rise to a staggering figure of 4.2 million.
The global market for robot-assisted surgeries is becoming more and more lucrative, as it is being preferred, over both the conventional and laparoscopic techniques by the surgeons, anywhere in the world.
And having closely followed all the major trends and developments in this industry for two years, our analysts have conducted a Business Intelligence and Strategy (BIS) Research on the market, more than once. Also, we have assisted our clients with customized research, where we focused on providing insightful and incisive information based on their specific requirements.
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