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Surgical bots to be ubiquitous in Indian hosps

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By NewsGram Staff-Writer

credit: www.intuitivesurgical.com
credit: www.intuitivesurgical.com

Chennai: Days are not far off when surgical robots will become a normal feature in hospitals for procedures like MRI scans, a senior official of Intuitive Surgical Inc. said on Sunday.

The US-based Intuitive Surgical makes surgical robots that enable minimally invasive surgeries with its da Vinci surgical systems. The primary surgical domains are urology, gynaecology, general surgery and cardiothoracic.

Jeroen MM van Heesewijk, senior vice president, Asia Pacific and Global Distribution said,”In India, we are infants in the technology adoption curve. Today a hospital without a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan machine is considered as a clinic.”

“Offering robotic surgeries will also give a boost to the countries medical tourism sector,” Mahendra Bhandari, CEO, Vattikuti Foundation, added while talking over the issue. Both were at Kochi to attend a two-day seminar on robotic surgery organised by Vattikuti Foundation.

According to van Heesewijk, India, China and Brazil, are important markets for Intuitive Surgical procedures. A total of 26 da Vinci systems are in operation in India at various hospitals. In India, Vattikuti Technologies is sole distributor and van Heesewijk said the company is not planning to go direct-selling directly to hospitals in India.

Van Heesewijk welcomed the tie-up between Google Inc. and Johnson & Johnson to work in the field of surgical robotics. According to him, the fact that two global players with deep pockets getting into robotics is a clear indication that robotic surgery segment will get a big boost.

Meanwhile, the Vattikuti Foundation is planning to increase the number of surgeons trained on robotic surgical systems to 300. Bhandari informed, “Presently, there are 147 surgeons trained in robotic surgeries in India. They do 300-400 robotic surgeries. Our target is to increase the surgeons trained in robotic surgeries to 300 by 2020.” According to him, when the foundation was started in 2009-10 there were only five or six surgeons trained to carry out robotic surgeries.

Queried whether the foundation would train surgeons only on da Vinci systems distributed in India, he said: “Intuitive Surgical is the market leader.” Bhandari said once a surgeon is trained, training him in other systems is not a big issue.”

On the advantages of robotic surgeries, he said the incision will be small and the loss of blood will be very minimal. He said the recovery of the patient is faster and the post-operative pain will also be less.

According to Bhandari, robotic procedures in India that cover a wide spectrum of procedures -cardiac, urology, general surgery, thoracic, gynaecology, head and neck, vascular and paediatrics – are expected to cross the 6,000 procedures mark in 2015.

With Inputs from IANS

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Prenatal choline may boost babies’ metabolism, brain development

Researchers have found that consuming more foods with choline during pregnancy may boost metabolism and brain development of babies.

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Epilepsy drug in pregnant women may increase oral cleft risk in baby. wikimedia commons

Researchers have found that consuming more foods with choline during pregnancy may boost metabolism and brain development of babies. Although the role of choline in neurodevelopment has been studied before in rodents, the new research was conducted on pigs, which has more relevance to humans.

Austin Mudd, a doctoral student in the Neuroscience Program at the University of Illinois said,”In pigs from choline-deficient moms, their brains were about 10 percent smaller overall.” And 11 of the 19 regions were significantly smaller in choline-deficient brains, he said. The result was the same in grey and white matter concentration of the piglets.

This may increase baby’s metabolism and brain development. Pixabay

Conversely, piglets whose mothers consumed sufficient choline during pregnancy had higher concentrations of grey and white matter in the brain’s cortical regions. Grey matter is primarily made up of the neurons themselves, while white matter comprises the material that connects neurons and bridges in different parts of the brain.

Also Read: Acupuncture May Boost Chances Of Pregnancy Through IVF

For the study, the team gave pregnant sows choline-deficient or choline-sufficient diets through the second half of their pregnancies. After weaning, piglets were fed choline-deficient or choline-sufficient milk replacer for 30 days. Then the month-old piglets were scanned by magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).

The left and right cortex were found to be larger in the choline-sufficient pigs, as a result of the a greater density of grey matter in the brain. As part of the study, some of the pigs from choline-deficient mothers were also given adequate amounts of choline after birth.

genetic testing
This is wonderful for mothers and babies. Pixabay

The results showed that it is not sufficient for the brain. “Postnatal supplementation cannot correct for prenatal deficiency. It has to occur during development,” explained Ryan Dilger, associate professor at the varsity.

“We know that the structural alteration is there, but it may not manifest in ways we can see until later in life. That’s why it’s important to think about this during gestation because the changes are occurring then,” Mudd noted. The study was published in Current Developments in Nutrition. IANS