Design of a flexible fetoscopy manipulation system for congenital diaphragmatic hernia

Yao, Wei and Elangovan, Hariprashanth and Nicolaides, Kypros (2014) Design of a flexible fetoscopy manipulation system for congenital diaphragmatic hernia. Medical Engineering and Physics, 36 (1). pp. 32-38. ISSN 1350-4533

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Abstract

Recent advancements in fetal surgery have proven that tracheal occlusion in fetuses with congenital diaphragmatic hernia is an effective way to prevent the occurrence of pulmonary hypoplasia. A novel flexible fetoscope with a parallel mechanism structure of a thumbstick to carry on the fetal tracheal balloon occlusion by the targeting and manipulation of the fetal endoscope at a high standard of quick response and dexterity is proposed in this paper. This design is compared with a commercial rigid fetoscope in terms of operation timing and reduced stress to the fetus at neck level. Experiments using a phantom have demonstrated that the flexible fetoscope has a better dexterity and is able to perform stable tracheoscopy and balloon inflation at different levels of the trachea, with the help of a fiberoptic camera.