Last week’s poll: Robot surgeons

NASA has adapted its Robonaut, which flies on the ISS, so that it can perform simple surgery. How do you feel about robot surgeons?

Engineer readers would have few qualms placing their lives in the manipulators of robotic surgeons, according to the 310 respondents to last week’s poll. A clear majoity of respondents, 57 per cent, thought that robotic surgical equipment represented a step forward in eliminating the some of the problems experienced by surgeons, such as hand tremor and tiredness, although their effectiveness depends ultimately on the skill of the operator; 17 per cent thought there was no problem at all with the technology. Meanwhile 13 per cent declared themselves still extremely uncomfortable with the implications of robotic surgery, and 6 per cent thought theymay be unsuitable for use outside hospitals.

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