One tiny incision for robot, one giant leap for mankind. This year, a team of surgeons used a robot to operate a human eye for the first time ever. The patient had lost almost all of his vision in the eye because a membrane growing on the surface of his retina had contracted and pulled it into an uneven shape.
Surgeons at Baltimore’s Johns Hopkins Hospital transplanted organs between an HIV-positive donor and HIV-positive recipients. It was a long-awaited new option for patients with the AIDS virus whose kidneys or livers are failing.
Just one day after the FDA cleared the Abbott Absorb GT1 Bioresorbable Vascular Scaffold System for use in the United States, a 73-year-old Arizona man became the first in the country to receive the device.
While surgeons in Sweden have performed several womb transplants (resulting in five live births so far), the procedure hasn’t been quite as successful in the U.S. — yet. This year, doctors at hospitals in Texas and Cleveland began attempting the procedure using both living and deceased donors, and achieving mixed results. Of the five wombs transplanted between the two locations, four have been rejected or removed due to complications. But as of October, one recipient still had hers.
Cartiva, the company that developed the synthetic cartilage implant (SCI), said one of the benefits of the new approach is a quicker recovery time. The SCI is specifically designed to help patients experiencing arthritis at the base of their big toe, which the company says is the most common manifestation of the ailment in the foot.
The MicroCutter 5/80 stapler continued to be used in minimally invasive surgeries worldwide, including a first-of-its kind laparoscopic duodenal atresia repair in a newborn.