Lifestyle & Belief

FDA approves robot technology to assist with heart surgery

The US Food and Drug Adminstration has approved a robotic system that will assist doctors with heart surgery, Forbes reported.

Angioplasty is a procedure that corrects narrowing or blockages caused by coronary artery disease — the most common form of heart disease and the leading cause of death in the United States for both men and women, according to the National Library of Medicine.

The CorPath 200 is the the world's first robotic system designed to assist cardiologists with the surgical technique, according to a press release.

But the innovation is more for doctors than patients. According to Forbes, the technology will benefit surgeons who are exposed to radiation every time they perform an angioplasty. Forbes cited a recent study that found such chronic radiation may be correlated with higher incidence of brain tumors among cardiologists who routinely carry out the procedure. Doctors have also reported back pain and other injuries from frequently wearing heavy lead aprons, according to the press release from Corindus Vascular Robotics, which developed the CorPath 200.

With the new system, surgeons will perform angioplasties from the seat of a lead-lined cockpit, where they will remotely control the robotic tools.