Intuitive Surgical Patent Grants

Image capture unit in a surgical instrument

Granted: June 13, 2017
Patent Number: 9675236
In a minimally invasive surgical system, an image capture unit includes a prism assembly and sensor assembly. The prism assembly includes a beam splitter, while the sensor assembly includes coplanar image capture sensors. Each of the coplanar image capture sensors has a common front end optical structure, e.g., the optical structure distal to the image capture unit is the same for each of the sensors. A controller enhances images acquired by the coplanar image capture sensors. The…

Torque compensation

Granted: June 13, 2017
Patent Number: 9675354
Embodiments of a clamping system are disclosed. In some embodiments, a system used with a motor assembly and a clamping device is presented, the system adjusting torque limits in the motor assembly according to conditions, for example operating temperature of the motor assembly and aging of the clamping device and the motor assembly. The clamping device can be, for example, a stapler or a vessel sealer.

Systems and methods for cancellation of joint motion using the null-space

Granted: June 13, 2017
Patent Number: 9675421
Devices, systems, and methods are disclosed for cancelling movement of one or more joints of a telesurgical manipulator to effect manipulation movement of an end effector. Methods include calculating movement of joints within a null-perpendicular space to effect desired end effector movement while calculating movement of one or more locked joints within a null-space to cancel the movement of the locked joints within the null-perpendicular-space. Methods may further include calculating…

Systems and methods for avoiding collisions between manipulator arms using a null-space

Granted: June 13, 2017
Patent Number: 9675422
Devices, systems, and methods for avoiding collisions between manipulator arms using a null-space are provided. In one aspect, the system calculates an avoidance movement using a relationship between reference geometries of the multiple manipulators to maintain separation between reference geometries. In certain embodiments, the system determines a relative state between adjacent reference geometries, determines an avoidance vector between reference geometries, and calculates an…

Lever actuated output gimbals

Granted: June 6, 2017
Patent Number: 9668816
A force transmission transmits a force to a primary output gimbal plate and a secondary output gimbal plate. The secondary output gimbal plate supports the primary output gimbal plate. Each of three primary levers is supported by a primary pivot. Each primary lever is coupled to the primary output gimbal plate such that the three couplings are not collinear. Each of three secondary levers is supported by a secondary pivot. Each secondary lever is coupled to one of the primary levers by a…

Gimbal and levers with equalizer

Granted: May 30, 2017
Patent Number: 9662175
A force transmission includes a gimbal plate having two degrees of freedom. Each of three lever arms is supported by a pivot between two ends of the lever arm. One end of each lever arm is coupled to the gimbal plate such that the three couplings are not collinear. An equalizer cable has two opposing ends, each end fixedly coupled to one of the lever arms. The equalizer cable is routed over a lever arm pulley pivotally coupled to another of the lever arms between the pivot and one end of…

Systems and methods for proximal control of a surgical instrument

Granted: May 30, 2017
Patent Number: 9662176
A robotic surgical system comprises an instrument chassis having a proximal mounting section and a distal mounting section. The system also comprises an instrument guide movably coupled to the distal mounting section and an actuator coupled to the proximal mounting section. A linkage system operably interconnects the actuator and the instrument guide to transmit motion from the actuator to the instrument guide.

Methods and systems for indicating a clamping prediction

Granted: May 30, 2017
Patent Number: 9662177
End effectors with closing mechanisms, and related tools and methods may be particularly beneficial when used for minimally invasive surgery. An example surgical tool comprises a first and second jaw movable between a closed grasped or clamped configuration and an open configuration. The tool further comprises a soft grip mode for grasping the tissue at a first force during which a separation parameter between the jaws is measured, and a therapeutic clamping mode in which the jaws clamp…

Force transmission mechanism for teleoperated surgical system

Granted: May 30, 2017
Patent Number: 9664262
A force transmission mechanism for a teleoperated surgical instrument may include a gear, a push/pull drive element, and a connection element. The push/pull drive element may be configured to transmit force to actuate an end effector of the surgical instrument and to rotate with a shaft of the surgical instrument when the shaft is rotated by the force transmission mechanism. The connection element may operatively couple the gear and the push/pull drive element. The connection element may…

Multi-user medical robotic system for collaboration or training in minimally invasive surgical procedures

Granted: May 30, 2017
Patent Number: 9666101
A multi-user medical robotic system for collaboration or training in minimally invasive surgical procedures includes first and second master input devices, a first slave robotic mechanism, and at least one processor configured to generate a first slave command for the first slave robotic mechanism by switchably using one or both of a first command indicative of manipulation of the first master input device by a first user and a second command indicative of manipulation of the second…

Optic fiber connection for a force sensing instrument

Granted: May 16, 2017
Patent Number: 9649172
In one embodiment, a surgical instrument includes a housing linkable with a manipulator arm of a robotic surgical system, a shaft operably coupled to the housing, a force transducer on a distal end of the shaft, and a plurality of fiber optic strain gauges on the force transducer. In one example, the plurality of strain gauges are operably coupled to a fiber optic splitter or an arrayed waveguide grating (AWG) multiplexer. A fiber optic connector is operably coupled to the fiber optic…

User interface with state machine for alternate tool mode for robotic surgical tools

Granted: May 16, 2017
Patent Number: 9649174
In one implementation, a method is disclosed in which a lock sensing mode is entered for a robotic surgical instrument. In the lock sensing mode, the degrees of freedom of movement in the robotic surgical instrument are switchably reduced. Further in the lock sensing mode, one or more end effectors of the robotic surgical instrument are switchably clamped together in the robotic surgical instrument. An increased level of torque may also be applied to the end effectors to increase a…

Retraction of tissue for single port entry, robotically assisted medical procedures

Granted: May 2, 2017
Patent Number: 9636000
A single port entry surgical instrument has an elongated structure with lumens through which surgical tools and an image capturing device may be inserted and controllably extended out of its distal end for performing a medical procedure, a tubular-shaped balloon disposed around the elongated structure, and an expandable retractor disposed around the balloon so that when the balloon is inflated, the retractor expands and locks in an expanded configuration to retract extraneous tissue. The…

Steerable flexible needle with embedded shape sensing

Granted: May 2, 2017
Patent Number: 9636040
A surgical system includes a flexible steerable needle and a shape sensor for measuring the shape of the needle. The surgical system can be manual (e.g., laparoscopic), robotic, or any combination of the two. By directly measuring the shape of the needle, complex and potentially inaccurate modeling of the needle to determine trajectory and insertion depth can be avoided in favor of much more robust direct measurement and modeling of needle shape and/or pose.

Medical device with orientable tip for robotically directed laser cutting and biomaterial application

Granted: May 2, 2017
Patent Number: 9636177
A medical device used in a medical robotic system has a conduit and an orientable tip. An optical fiber coupled to a laser source and/or a catheter coupled to one or more biomaterial sources extends through the conduit and tip so that the tip of the medical device may be robotically directed towards a target tissue for laser and/or biomaterial application as part of a medical procedure performed at a surgical site within a patient. A protective sheath covers the fiber as it extends…

Multi-user medical robotic system for collaboration or training in minimally invasive surgical procedures

Granted: May 2, 2017
Patent Number: 9636186
A multi-user medical robotic system for collaboration or training in minimally invasive surgical procedures includes first and second master input devices, a first slave robotic mechanism, and at least one processor configured to generate a first slave command for the first slave robotic mechanism by switchably using one or both of a first command indicative of manipulation of the first master input device by a first user and a second command indicative of manipulation of the second…

Method and system for moving an articulated instrument back towards an entry guide while automatically reconfiguring the articulated instrument for retraction into the entry guide

Granted: April 25, 2017
Patent Number: 9629520
A medical robotic system includes articulated instruments extending out of a distal end of an entry guide. Prior to pivoting the entry guide to re-orient it and the instruments, the instruments are moved in tandem back towards the entry guide. Haptic cues and velocity limits are provided to assist the operator in the retraction of the instruments. After retraction, the entry guide may then be pivoted without concern that the instruments will harm patient anatomy. The movement of the…

Sealing multiple surgical instruments

Granted: April 25, 2017
Patent Number: 9629681
In accordance with aspects of the present invention, an instrument guide is provided. An instrument guide according to some embodiments of the present invention includes a channel portion, the channel portion including a plurality of channels through which surgical instruments can be inserted; a lower part mechanically fixed to the channel portion, the lower part including doors to seal each of the channels; an upper part, the upper part mechanically attached to the lower part and…

Medical robotic system providing sensory feedback indicating a difference between a commanded state and a preferred pose of an articulated instrument

Granted: April 18, 2017
Patent Number: 9622826
A medical robotic system includes an entry guide with articulated instruments extending out of its distal end. A controller is configured to command manipulation of one of the articulated instruments towards a state commanded by operator manipulation of an input device while commanding sensory feedback to the operator indicating a difference between the commanded state and a preferred pose of the articulated instrument, so that the sensory feedback serves to encourage the operator to…

Method and apparatus to provide updated patient images during robotic surgery

Granted: April 18, 2017
Patent Number: 9622831
In a method and an apparatus to provide updated images during a robotically-implemented surgical procedure, 3D data are obtained of a volume of a patient, which includes anatomy involved in the procedure. The anatomy is segmented from a reconstructed image of the volume. During the procedure, the surgeon applies forces on the anatomy, causing a geometric change of the anatomy. Force sensors in the surgical robot detect these forces, which are supplied to a processor that controls display…