Saturday, August 13, 2022

Medical Robots Making Way for Improved Operations

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Minimally invasive surgeries are now being made much better. Sophisticated instruments and specialized techniques help in minimising the risk during surgery. Since the incision is smaller using these methods, patients bleed and hurt less resulting in a shorter and easier recovery process. Recovery times have reduced to days instead of weeks.

Considering the Indian scenario

After disrupting the rest of the world, cancer is making its way to India as well. Incidences of tongue and mouth cancers are on the rise, calling for head and neck surgery. Cancer at the base of the tongue can be efficiently taken up with the help of a medical robot. Resulting in least pain and minimal scarring to the patient.

Adoption of Robotic Surgery by government hospitals will ensure treatment to people who can’t afford private healthcare but deserve the latest medical attention. The government hospitals typically adopt a dual pricing system–charge only those who can afford.

Some statistics for India

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According to the National Institute of Cancer Prevention and Research (NICPR), statistics for India are nothing short of alarming.

  • Estimated number of people living with cancer: around 2.5 million
  • Every year, new cancer patients registered: Over 700 thousand
  • Cancer-related deaths: 5,56,400

71% of all cancer related deaths are in the 30-69 age group

  • Total: 3,95,400
  • Men: 2,00,100
  • Women: 1,95,300

Aren’t these number something to look at? If cancer operations can improved with robots, shouldn’t there be more focus towards the solution?

Tracing the advances

Some plans indicate, increasing the current number of 190 robotic surgeons to about 500 by 2020 to cover 100 hospitals over the current 30. Raj Vattikuti, founder Vattikuti foundation explained the need for robotic surgery by offering 100 paid fellowships to super specialist surgeons, over the next 5 years.

“Even though 4,000 robot-assisted surgeries were performed in 2015, representing a fivefold increase in 5 years, India has not even scratched its potential, as the benefit can be passed to the masses beyond metro locations,” said Vattikuti at a press event last month.

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