Journal of Surgical Simulation 2017; 4: B: 11 - 11

Published: 11 May 2017


Oral presentation

Special Issue: Real-time analysis of tissue trauma

Dominic Jones, Ali Alazmani and Peter Culmer
Corresponding author: Dominic Jones, School of Mechanical Engineering, University of Leeds, Leeds, UK. Email:


In minimally invasive surgery (MIS) a lack of reliable sensing within the tools can lead to significant trauma along the tissue-tool boundary.  The small surface area of the tool faces can amplify pressures applied to tissue and reduce feedback to a surgeon.  Therefore it is crucial that increased sensing be made available to surgeons in order to adequately control the pressures exerted on the tissue in surgery.  Further to this, sensing within the faces of a surgical grasper presents the opportunity to detect potential damage in real time.

Using a simulated surgical grasper, the current work aims to confirm a metric for real time analysis of damage, based upon the normalised stress rate of a sample.  Stresses on the tissue are measured by a multiaxial soft load sensor, allowing application of shear forces similar to that of a surgical environment.  The force response of the tissue is non-linear, therefore a simple relationship is not observed. Through parametric analysis such a metric can be normalised for both loading speed and overall load.

The use of such a metric would offer surgeons a definitive measure of tissue damage, allowing for significant damage to be prevented in the early stages.  In addition to this, the damage metric could potentially be integrated into the control of MIS robots, to automatically prevent damage before it occurs.


minimally invasive surgery; sensing; grasper; real time analysis; damage metric

Additional Information

This presentation was given at the one day symposium, Current Approaches to Understanding Surgical Error, University of Leeds, Leeds, UK, on 9 December 2016.

Conflicts of interest: none declared.

Author affiliations:
Dominic Jones, Ali Alazmani, Peter Culmer: School of Mechanical Engineering, University of Leeds, Leeds, UK