MRI-Guided Robotically Assisted Focal Laser Ablation of the Prostate Using Canine Cadavers

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date



IEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering








Focal laser ablation; image-guided therapy; MRI; MRI-conditional robot


© 1964-2012 IEEE. Objective: a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)-conditional needle guidance robot is developed to enhance MRI-guided focal laser ablation (FLA) therapy in patients with focal prostate cancer. Methods: inspired by the workflow of the manual FLA therapy, we developed an MRI-conditional robot with two degrees of freedom to provide the guidance for laser ablation catheter. This robot is powered by pneumatic turbine motors and encoded with the custom-designed optical encoder. The needle could be inserted manually through the designed robotic system, which keeps the patients inside MRI bore throughout the procedure. The robot hardware is integrated with the custom ablation planning and monitoring software (OncoNav) to provide an iterative treatment plan to cover the whole ablation zone. Virtual tumors were selected in three canine cadavers as targets to validate the performance of the proposed hardware and software system. Results: phantom studies show that the average targeting error is less than 2 mm and the workflow of the entire procedure lasts for 100 minutes. Canine cadaver experiment results show that all the targets were successfully ablated in no more than three administrations. Significance: MRI-guided prostate FLA is feasible using the proposed hardware and software system, indicating potential utility in future human trials.

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