MRI-safe robot for endorectal prostate biopsy

Dan Stoianovici, Chunwoo Kim, Govindarajan Srimathveeravalli, Peter Sebrecht, Doru Petrisor, Jonathan Coleman, Stephen B. Solomon, Hedvig Hricak

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

74 Scopus citations


This paper reports the development of an MRI-Safe robot for direct (interventional) MRI-guided endorectal prostate biopsy. The robot is constructed of nonmagnetic and electrically nonconductive materials, and is electricity free, using pneumatic actuation and optical sensors. Targeting biopsy lesions of MRI abnormality presents substantial clinical potential for the management of prostate cancer. This paper describes MRI-Safe requirements and presents the kinematic architecture, design, and construction of the robot, and a comprehensive set of preclinical tests for MRI compatibility and needle targeting accuracy. The robot has a compact and simple three degree-of-freedom (DoF) structure, two for orienting a needle-guide and one to preset the depth of needle insertion. The actual insertion is performed manually through the guide and up to the preset depth. To reduce the complexity and size of the robot next to the patient, the depth setting DoF is remote. Experimental results show that the robot is safe to use in any MRI environment (MRI-Safe). Comprehensive MRI tests show that the presence and motion of the robot in the MRI scanner cause virtually no image deterioration or signal-to-noise ratio change. Robot's accuracy in bench test, CT-guided in-vitro, MRI-guided in-vitro , and animal tests are 0.37, 1.10, 2.09, and 2.58 mm, respectively. These values are acceptable for clinical use.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number6600903
Pages (from-to)1289-1299
Number of pages11
JournalIEEE/ASME Transactions on Mechatronics
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 2014


  • MRI-Safe
  • MRI-compatible
  • Motor
  • pneumatic
  • prostate biopsy
  • robot

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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