The invention

Nowadays a trend in surgery is to operate in a minimally invasive way inside the patient in order to reduce trauma and potential complications. In this field, the manipulation of any medical tool is subject to parasitic forces, such as friction or forces induced by the change of curvature, implying the force felt by the scientist is not the force exerted by the tool inside the patient body. sensendo Therefore, there is a need of a force measurement and force feedback system. This can be applied in diagnostic and in therapeutic applications.
The present invention is relative to a force transducer comprising strain sensing optical fibres able to mesure the interaction force between the surgical tool and the tissue and to a force feedback system that can recreated the interaction force between the tools and the tissue.

Key advantages of the technology

  • Highly sensitive in a number of predetermined degrees of freedom
  • Non electrical signal
  • Can be adapted to a wide range of configurations and applications

Commercial interest

Potential applications in the following fields:
  • Urology
  • Cardiology
  • Pneumology
  • Radiology
  • Ophtalmology

The inventor

Dr Jacques Devière is currently Chairman of the Department of Gastroenterology at the Erasme University Hospital, Brussels, Belgium; this includes gastroenterology, hepatology, GI oncology, endoscopy, and liver transplantation. His particular research interests include therapeutic endoscopy, liver diseases, and pathophysiology of pancreatic diseases. Dr Devière has been general secretary of the Royal Belgian Society of Gastroenterology from 1996 to 2001. He is member of the Board and Treasurer of the European Society of Gastrointestinal Endoscopy.
Since 1982, he organizes every year, a large international course called «GEEW» (Gastroenterology and Endotherapy European Workshop) and since a few years, small «Single Topic» workshops devoted to specific problems and also including live demonstrations. He is author or co-author of 200 PubMed referenced publications, and has written 15 books chapters.

The team

For many years, there is a strong collaboration between the Faculty of Medicine, especially the Department of Gastroenterology, and the Bio-, Electro- And Mechanical Systems (BEAMS) department of the Faculty of Applied Sciences (School of Engineering) of the Université Libre de Bruxelles.
This partnership has led to many research projects, patent applications and prototypes in the field of biomedical engineering.
The multidisciplinary nature of BEAMS enables the team to deal with biomedical engineering problems involving micro-techniques, mechanics, electro-mechanics, electrical engineering and electronics.

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Updated on May 12, 2020