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Proc Inst Mech Eng H. 1997;211(4):317-25.

The Probot--an active robot for prostate resection.

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  • 1Department of Mechanical Engineering, Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine, London.


As men age, their prostates can enlarge, causing urinary difficulty. Surgery to correct this [transurethral resection of the prostate (TURP)] is a skilled and time-consuming operation requiring many repetitive motions of a cutter. A robot has been developed to perform these motions, relieving the surgeon of much of the burden of surgery. This robot has been tried both in the laboratory and later on human subjects and has proved itself capable of performing prostate resection. The Probot system consists of on-line imaging and three-dimensional prostate model construction, an appropriate surgeon-computer interface, a counterbalanced mounting frame and a computer controlled robot.

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