Future of Healthcare: Could robots replace surgeons?
Philips Healthcare has become the exclusive distributor of Corindus’ robotic-assisted CorPath 200 system, as on August 22, 2012, Philips announced its agreement with Corindus to distribute the interventional cardiology system in the US.
Coronary artery disease (CAD) is the most common type of heart disease and is characterized by the buildup of plaque and narrowing of the coronary arteries. Over time, CAD weakens the heart muscle and leads to arrhythmias and heart failure. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 400,000 people died from coronary artery disease in 2008 in the US. Minimally invasive techniques, known as percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI), are used to treat this debilitating condition and are comprised of procedures such as coronary stenting and balloon angioplasty. PCI is usually performed in the catheterization lab using X-ray imaging.
PCI is one of the fastest growing markets in the US and is estimated to reach $4.2 billion by 2018. It has transformed the treatment paradigm for coronary artery disease and reduced patient recovery times, treatment costs, and post-surgery complications. Although there are several advantages of using PCI over traditional invasive treatments, there are several challenges with current PCI procedures that need to be addressed. These include exposure to radiation, precise stent deployment, stability of the guidewire and catheter, and accurate visualization and measurement of lesion length.