Industry: Surgical guidewire
To perform minimally invasive surgeries, physicians use robotic guidewires to navigate a patient’s body. This project out of Georgia Tech has brought a prototype micro-scale guidewire, steered with robotics, that’s smaller and more dexterous than other guidewires, hypothetically improving surgeons’ ability to use endoscopic tools.
Notably, the prototype is designed to help treat peripheral arterial disease (PAD), which affects millions of people worldwide. The steerable guidewire aims to reduce the surgeon’s effort and time required for a PAD procedure. It can also be used for other interventional cardiac procedures, such as trans-catheter aortic valve replacement, and it has pediatric applications.
The prototype has been developed using Nitinol, an MRI-compatible material, with an asymmetric notch design that allows increased range of motion and is capable of moving in 3D. With a cross-section of .78mm, the guidewire system is ultra-compact, low-cost and less complex than existing solutions on the market.