Renal surgery in the new millennium.
In the not too distant future, the minimally invasive renal surgeon will be able to practice an operation on a difficult case on a three-dimensional virtual reality simulator, providing all attributes of the real procedure. The patient's imaging studies will be imported into the simulator to better mimic particular anatomy. When confident enough of his or her skills, the surgeon will start operating on the patient using the same virtual reality simulator/telepresence surgery console system, which will permit the live surgery to be conducted by robots hundreds of miles away. The robots will manipulate miniature endoscopes or control minimally or noninvasive ablative technologies. Endoscopic/laparoscopic footage of the surgical procedure will be stored digitally in optical disks to be used later in telementoring of a surgery resident. All this and more will be possible in the not so distant third millennium.
Delvecchio, FC; Preminger, GM
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