Ten days ago, when I got invited by Prof.Oktar Asoglu to watch a live robotic surgery, I first had second thoughts. He would perform a stomach removal operation and I got uncomfortable even watching people get poked, On the other hand, the fact that I would be watching a great gastrointestinal surgeon (perhaps the best), and that it would be a “robotic” surgery (with the Da Vinci robot system) added huge excitement. As an academician and expert in telerobotics from USA, I had had experience in all aspects of robotics, but had never seen one operating on a real patient, which is the ultimate measure of performance in telerobotics. My hesitation was short lived, and I was soon to go through one of the most unforgettable experiences in my life. It was literally amazing to watch the robot gain life in the masterful hands of Asoglu as the two performed an otherwise rather dramatic operation in great harmony and in a way that did not feel invasive at all. The success of this beautifully orchestrated surgery was also evident through the very quick recovery of the patient who was on his feet the next day and back to normal life in 5, despite the significance of the surgery. I am still under the influence of this breath taking experience, and will full heartedly say “Long live robots!!”…. But only and only in the hands of great masters like Prof. Oktar Asoglu.
Seta Bogosyan, PhD
Electrical and Computer Engineering
NSF CyberAlaska. Director
University of Alaska Fairbanks
(907) 474-2755 – (907) 474 5135 fax