John Cartmill and David Butt discuss how surgery might change with robot-like enhancements to surgeons’ capabilities
The advent of the surgical “robot”, exemplified by the da Vinci Surgical System (Intuitive Surgical, Sunnyvale, Calif, USA), brings fresh approaches, possibilities and questions to the field of surgery. Because of their capacity to augment dexterity, strength, coordination and vision, machines like da Vinci will take surgeons beyond their current level of shared experience and vocabulary. They force us to reconceptualise operating as surgeons currently appreciate it.
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