Westdeutsches Robotikzentrum


The Robot

The “da Vinci® XITM” Surgery System by Intuitive Surgical, Inc., located in Sunnyvale, California (USA), was designed and developed for endoscopic operations. The system finds universal acceptance and is now recognized in almost all surgical disciplines. Please note: The da Vinci® Surgical System is not controlled by a robot. Your surgeon is always in control of the entire operation and is supported only by the da Vinci® robotic platform.

The robot comprises of a control board, at which the operator sits during the entire procedure. While viewing the 3D monitor, the operator controls the robotic arms. The mobile stand has four arms, one of which holds the 3D camera. The other three arms are equipped with interchangeable instruments.

The so-called master controls the instruments which enables a completely steady hand movement over a selectable scale of 1:2, 1:3 or 1:5. The instruments are equipped with joints (EndoWrist®), which recreate the seven degrees of freedom (the number of independent movements) of the human hand.

The Operation

After the operator mounts and sets up the instruments, the “robot” is docked. The surgeon performs the actual operation via the “Control Panel”. Another surgeon and an instrumented surgical nurse are directly at the operating table. The da Vinci® robot operates with laparoscopic instruments by imitating the hand movements of the surgeon in real time. The robot is not programmed and will never perform any operational step automatically. On the contrary: The da Vinci® system ensures the exact execution of all movements of the surgeon without loss of precision.

The Three Dimensional View

During laparoscopic surgery, the conventional view of the surgeon using a single camera is limited to two dimensions, much like a TV screen. The da Vinci® system uses two high-resolution, fiberoptic cameras which generate a three-dimensional image. Together with up to twelve times magnification of the surgical area, the view of the surgeon, therefore, reaches an unprecedented quality. Since the operator solely controls the camera arm, optimum visibility is ensured at all times.

Portable Instruments

The da Vinci® instruments differ from the instruments that are used during a conventional laparoscopic procedure, especially by implementing an additional joint, which, much like the human wrist, allows work from almost any angle.