Lasers are used in a growing number of surgical procedures as ideal tools for cutting, ablating or coagulating tissue. Their use is gaining popularity with the progress of precision medicine, which aims to treat diseases with minimal damage to healthy tissue. This is because laser power can be modulated to produce precise and high-quality effects on tissue, such as clean incisions on soft tissue. This is crucial for the success of delicate operations, such as microsurgeries.
In traditional laser surgery, the incision quality depends entirely on the surgeon’s experience and ability to manipulate the laser and its parameters. Extensive training is required to develop an effective laser cutting technique, which includes both (i) the acquisition of basic knowledge of the physical principles behind laser ablation of tissue; and (ii) the ability to manipulate the laser parameters and its exposure time in order to provide accurate cutting.
It is not trivial to regulate all related parameters to achieve high-quality laser ablation outcomes. It is even more difficult to control such system to achieve a desired cutting depth. Therefore, this research aims at investigating and modeling the interaction between laser energy and soft tissues as the enabling knowledge for the creation of novel technologies for precision laser surgery. This includes assistive technologies and surgical automation methods.