Intuitive Surgical Inc.’s (NSDQ:ISRG) blockbuster da Vinci robotic surgery system is getting a lot of buzz on the web, as hospital workers figure out ways to demonstrate its sensitivity through impressive and sometimes comedic displays.
Videos on YouTube of the da Vinci system peeling grapes, building paper airplanes and "dancing," have racked up tens of thousands of views.
In this first video, uploaded just last week and already viewed nearly 95,000 times, a urology fellow at Southmead Hospital peels the skin off of a grape during an event to raise awareness of men’s cancers. Southmead got its da Vinci system in 2009 and has carried out 450 prostate cancer procedures since then.
Da Vinci peels a grape
The robot has been a huge boon for Intuitive Surgical, which notched another street-beating quarter, reporting 32 percent leap in profits for the second quarter ended June 30 thanks to a 21 percent jump in sales.
Intuitive has been on a 10-year roll since winning a nod from the FDA for a prostate indication for the da Vinci robot in 2001. The company posted double-digit growth for FY 2010 in January, launched three new surgical products in the U.S. this year, landed CE Mark approval in the European Union and filed for 510(k) clearance for a surgical irrigation instrument, Guthart said during the company’s earnings conference call.
President & CEO Gary Guthart, who has been at the helm for about a year, made the list of MassDevice’s five most innovative CEOs for 2011.
This next video takes a less serious approach, featuring the robot playing the children’s game "Operation." In the game, players remove "body parts" from a surgery patient without setting off an alarm that buzzes when the metal tongs touch the sides of the opening.
The video, featuring students at Johns Hopkins University laboratory for computational sensing and robotics, has gotten more than 96,000 views since April.
Da Vinci plays Operation
The da Vinci robot is fully manual, responding to a surgeon’s movements in real time. The device is not programmable and makes not decisions on its own, relying on human intelligence while capitalizing on machine precision.
In this next video, the robot makes and throws a paper airplane about as long as a penny and attempts to fly it.
The video, uploaded by Swedish Medical Center in Seattle, has racked up nearly 480,000 views since March.
Da Vinci builds a paper airplane.
The da Vinci robot dances alongside a hospital worker in this last video, a promotional spot for Methodist Hospital in Henderson, Ky.
The video, which concludes with the challenge that the da Vinci system is "trumping your lame, old-school moves," highlights some differences in human and robot physical limitations via a dance-battle.
This video has had more than 61,000 views since last week.
Da Vinci dances.