Prostate cancer is the most common cancer among males, leading to approximately 27,000 deaths in the United States [1]. Focal laser ablation (FLA) has been shown to be a promising approach for prostate cancer treatment with the advantage of efficiently ablating the cancer cells while inflicting less damage on the surrounding tissues. In current FLA procedures, a rigid template — with holes spacing of 5mm — guides the FLA catheter to the target position. Drawbacks of the conventional approach for catheter targeting are 1) limited degrees of freedom (DoF) and 2) a low insertion resolution. In addition, the targeting capability of the rigid template is compromised when the pubic arch or nerve bundles intersect the catheter trajectory. We hypothesized that a compact design of an MRI-conditional robot with two active planar DoFs, one passive rotation DoF, and remote catheter insertion capacities could enhance the clinical workflow required for MRI-guided FLA prostate procedures.

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