Simone Giertz went into brain surgery in the most positive way possible. The YouTuber and "Shitty Robot" creator posted a video before her surgery on Wednesday, joking that she couldn't wait to see photos of her brain because she was convinced that it was beautiful. She announced that she had a non-cancerous brain tumor in April. SEE ALSO: Simone Giertz, creator of'Shitty Robots,' reveals she has a brain tumor "I'm pretty scared," Giertz admitted in the video. Giertz initially thought the swelling behind her right eye was because of allergies, but tests revealed that she had a golf ball-sized tumor.
The internet hummed last week with reports that "Humans Still Make Better Surgeons Than Robots." Stanford University Medical Center set off the tweetstorm with its seemingly scathing report on robotic surgery. When reading the research of 24,000 patients with kidney cancer, I concluded that the problem lied with the humans overcharging patients versus any technology flaw. In fact, the study praised robotic surgery for complicated procedures and suggested the fault lied with hospitals unnecessarily pushing robotic surgery for simple operations over conventional methods, which led to "increases in operating times and cost." Dr. Benjamin Chung, the author of the report, stated that the expenses were due to either "the time needed for robotic operating room setup" or the surgeon's "learning curve" with the new technology.
With a bulky camera eye and spindly hydraulic arm, this medical robot looks like it could fit in on an automotive production line. It carefully scans soft, sticky intestinal tissue and delicately weaves stitches with unmatched surgical precision. Indeed, with no guiding hand from its fellow doctors, it is the best in the world at performing the medical operation it was designed for. It is performing surgery all by itself.
And on Wednesday, scientists reported that the Smart Tissue Autonomous Robot could stitch together separate pieces of the bowel in pigs, the first time a surgical robot has completed a portion of an operation in living soft tissue without human guidance. The new paper, published in the journal Science Translational Medicine, amounts to what's known as a proof of concept -- a demonstration that the new advance appears to be possible. Outside experts described it as a key achievement in efforts to move toward autonomous robotic surgery, but noted the technology is years away from being used in operating rooms, or even in a clinical trial. "It's one step forward," said Dr. Dragan Golijanin, director of the Minimally Invasive Urology Institute at the Miriam Hospital, an affiliate of Brown University, who was not involved in the research. Surgeons use robots in operating theaters around the country, but as it stands, they guide them like a puppeteer directs a marionette, conducting every move and response.