The primary objective of this Phase II research is to design, fabricate, and surgically evaluate a robotic catheter for endocardial ablation procedures. Phase I research successfully demonstrated the feasibility of this concept through the development of a tele-operated catheter prototype with shape memory alloy (SMA) actuated bending segments. Phase II research will build upon the achievements of Phase I to produce a catheter with full ablation capabilities, enhanced maneuverability, computer-controlled ablation modes, and contact stability during ablative energy application. This technology has the potential to transform ablation procedures by providing unprecedented access and maneuverability to open spaces within the heart. Cardiovascular disease is rapidly becoming a worldwide epidemic, claiming more lives in the United States each year than the next six causes of death combined. As the treatment of cardiovascular disease transitions toward minimally-invasive approaches, many procedures now utilize catheters for quick and easy access to intracardiac anatomy. While catheters have proven effective in a number of endovascular procedures (angioplasty, stent deployment, AV node ablation, etc.), their effectiveness in navigating open spaces inside the heart is limited. The development of SMA-actuated robotic catheters will be an enabling technology for such procedures. In Phase I, our multidisciplinary research team (consisting of engineers, surgeons, electrophysiologists, and industrial collaborators) developed a robotic catheter prototype with dual bending segments and promising capabilities. This tele-operated device uses computer- based controls to interpret joystick commands and to actuate the SMA tendons for accurate tracking of the commanded tip position. This prototype exhibits high mobility and precise positioning of the catheter tip, two desirable attributes of ablation catheter technology. The successful refinement of this technology will significantly enhance the efficacy of endocardial ablation procedures. The proposed research will also advance scientific knowledge and understanding of SMA-actuated surgical technologies. It is anticipated that the robotic catheter will be a lower-cost alternative to other robotic surgical systems, making it more accessible to patients and reducing overall healthcare costs.
A novel internally actuated robotic catheter will be developed for endocardial ablation procedures. This technology has the potential to transform ablation procedures by providing unprecedented access and maneuverability to open spaces within the heart. This catheter will be a lower-cost alternative to other robotic surgical systems, making it more accessible to patients and reducing overall healthcare costs.
|Wiest, Jennifer H; Buckner, Gregory D (2015) PATH OPTIMIZATION AND CONTROL OF A SHAPE MEMORY ALLOY ACTUATED CATHETER FOR ENDOCARDIAL RADIOFREQUENCY ABLATION. Rob Auton Syst 65:88-97|
|Hannen, Jennifer C; Crews, John H; Buckner, Gregory D (2012) INDIRECT INTELLIGENT SLIDING MODE CONTROL OF A SHAPE MEMORY ALLOY ACTUATED FLEXIBLE BEAM USING HYSTERETIC RECURRENT NEURAL NETWORKS. Smart Mater Struct 21:85015|