US-based medical robotics firm Medrobotics has received regulatory clearance for the use of its Flex Robotic system in otolaryngology and colorectal procedures from the Australian Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA).
The minimally invasive robotic surgical platform is designed to provide scar-free access to reach anatomical areas, which are not usually accessible with straight, rigid instruments.
Designed for navigation through a single and small entry point, the device currently allows access through the mouth and anus.
In the future, there may also be access via other natural orifices such as the vagina, or small incisions in the abdomen.
Medrobotics chief executive officer Samuel Straface said: “The human gastrointestinal system is full of twists and turns, and rigid surgical robots were not designed to operate in that environment. The Flex Robotic System was.
“In 2015, Medrobotics started revolutionising treatment in the head and neck in Australia. We can now begin doing that in colorectal procedures.
“Australian hospitals, surgeons and patients will be able to enjoy the benefits of the world’s only flexible, surgical robotic platform. It will easily integrate into hospitals due to its mobility and short learning curve.”
The Flex Robotic system secured CE mark in March 2014 and received clearance from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in July 2015.
The firm is working further on developing new surgical applications for the system in several areas such as general surgery, gynaecology and urology.
Image: Flex Robotic system. Photo: courtesy of Business Wire.