World’s first autonomous “capsule robot” at work

May 09, 2017, 7:01 AM EDT
(Source: Lubos and Alena/flickr)
(Source: Lubos and Alena/flickr)

A team of physicians and biomedical engineers at Vanderbilt University has developed the world’s first “colonoscopy robot,” which is a semi-automated system that can examine the colon internally while maneuvered by magnets outside the body.

The new approach may sound “weird” but it could rid the patient of physical discomfort that usually accompanies the standard colonoscopy, writes Seeker. Gently guided by magnetic fields, the robot capsule smoothly traverses the gastrointestinal tract, making the procedure easy for both the clinician and the patient.  

Since the process virtually eliminates any pain, physicians may not have to sedate the patients when conducting colonoscopy with this robot, notes Medical Xpress.