Magnetically Operated Surgical Tool Cleared for Weight Loss Operations

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Levita Magnetics, a Silicon Valley firm, won FDA clearance to introduce its Levita Magnetic Surgical System for use in bariatric procedures. Previously, the magnetically controlled surgical device has only had clearance in the U.S. for performing cholecystectomies (gallbladder removal).

The system consists of a small metallic clasping tool that is placed within the treatment area via a laparoscopy port, which was already created for another instrument used during the procedure. It is delivered using a traditional shaft and made to grasp onto soft tissue. Once positioned, the shaft is removed and from there the device can be pulled on while inside the body using an external magnet. This trick can be used to reposition the stomach or mesentery or other mobile internal structure to be able to perform various procedures without having to create an extra access port, which leaves a scar on the body.

Here’s a quick animation showing the workings of the device in a bariatric procedure: