Design and control of motion compensation cardiac catheters
Robotic cardiac catheters have the potential to revolutionize heart surgery by extending minimally invasive techniques to complex surgical repairs inside the heart. However, catheter technologies are currently unable to track fast tissue motion, which is required to perform delicate procedures inside a beating heart. This paper proposes an actuated catheter tool that compensates for the motion of heart structures like the mitral valve apparatus by servoing a catheter guidewire inside a flexible sheath. We examine design and operation parameters that affect performance and establish that friction and backlash limit the tracking performance of the catheter system. Based on the results of these experiments and a model of the backlash behavior, we propose and implement compensation methods to improve trajectory tracking performance. The catheter system is evaluated with 3D ultrasound guidance in simulate in vivo conditions. The results demonstrate that with mechanical and control system design improvements, a robotic catheter system can accurately track the fast motion of the human mitral valve.