Autonomous Navigation for Robot-Assisted Intraluminal and Endovascular Procedures: A Systematic Review

Ameya Pore, Zhen Li, Diego Dall'Alba, Albert Hernansanz, Elena De Momi, Arianna Menciassi, Alicia Casals Gelpi, Jenny Dankelman, Paolo Fiorini, Emmanuel Vander Poorten

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Increased demand for less invasive procedures has accelerated the adoption of Intraluminal Procedures (IP) and Endovascular Interventions (EI) performed through body lumens and vessels. As navigation through lumens and vessels is quite complex, interest grows to establish autonomous navigation techniques for IP and EI for reaching the target area. Current research efforts are directed toward increasing the Level of Autonomy (LoA) during the navigation phase. One key ingredient for autonomous navigation is Motion Planning (MP) techniques. This paper provides an overview of MP techniques categorizing them based on LoA. Our analysis investigates advances for the different clinical scenarios. Through a systematic literature analysis using the PRISMA method, the study summarizes relevant works and investigates the clinical aim, LoA, adopted MP techniques, and validation types. We identify the limitations of the corresponding MP methods and provide directions to improve the robustness of the algorithms in dynamic intraluminal environments. MP for IP and EI can be classified into four subgroups: node, sampling, optimization, and learning-based techniques, with a notable rise in learning-based approaches in recent years. One of the review's contributions is the identification of the limiting factors in IP and EI robotic systems hindering higher levels of autonomous navigation. In the future, navigation is bound to become more autonomous, placing the clinician in a supervisory position to improve control precision and reduce workload.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2529-2548
JournalIEEE Transactions on Robotics
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2023


  • Autonomy
  • Catheters
  • continuum robots
  • Endoscopes
  • endovascular interventions
  • intraluminal procedures
  • IP networks
  • medical robotics
  • motion planning
  • navigation
  • Navigation
  • Robot sensing systems
  • Robots
  • Surveys

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