The surgical robots market crossed the $4.6 billion mark in 2020, and is expected to grow by more than 17.4% between 2021 and 2027, according to research in the field.
Several companies in Israel and around the world have identified the popular market and have developed technologies that combine robotics and artificial intelligence, creating a new reality in the field of surgery and allowing unprecedented accuracy during operations, along with a shorter recovery and hospitalization for patients.
For example, the Israeli company Human Xtensions has developed a small robot that allows the surgeon to accurately perform very complex operations in the abdominal cavity, in hard-to-access areas.
"The development addresses the increase in the frequency of minimally invasive surgeries and the need for a solution that combines the advantages of robotic technology with the flexibility and economic advantage of minimally invasive tools," explained Tami Frenkel, Human Xtensions co-founder and CEO.
The company is traded on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange and has approval from the FDA to market its products in the US.
The Haifa-based start-up Beyeonics has developed digital headsets for eye surgeons, orthopedic surgeons and brain surgeries. The system combines augmented reality, 3D imaging and artificial intelligence-based information processing, which present the data to the surgeon, supporting real-time decision making.
"Due to the increase in life expectancy, there has been an accelerated growth in the number of eye diseases of the past decade that require surgeries such as cataracts and glaucoma,” explained Beyeonics CEO Ron SchneiderAnother giant company in the field is Medtronic, which works to relieve pain and prolong life for millions of people in more than 150 countries.
Among the technologies Medtronic has developed is the Transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR), a minimally invasive procedure to replace the aortic valve in patients with severe aortic stenosis. The metal frame is a blend of nickel and titanium. This material allows the frame to shape itself to a patient’s anatomy.
In the past, patients who needed a valve replacement had to undergo invasive treatment including open-heart surgery, which involved a months-long recovery. Today, using TAVI technology, the catheterization is performed in about half an hour, at the end of which the patient remains under supervision for only two days - and then can go back to normal life.