4/4/2013 8:05:47 AM
Although bladder cancer is the sixth most common form of cancer in the U.S. and the most expensive to treat, the basic method that doctors use to treat it hasn't changed much in more than 70 years. An interdisciplinary collaboration of engineers and doctors at Vanderbilt and Columbia Universities intends to change that situation dramatically. Headed by Nabil Simaan, associate professor of mechanical engineering at Vanderbilt, the team has developed a prototype telerobotic platform designed to be inserted through natural orifices - in this case the urethra - that can provide surgeons with a much better view of bladder tumors so they can diagnose them more accurately. It is also designed to make it easier to remove tumors from the lining of the bladder regardless of their location - an operation called transurethral recession.
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