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New Monarch Technology Brings Benefits for Lung Cancer Patients

February 25, 2019

Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer deaths for men and women. In its early stages, the disease shows few symptoms, making it difficult to detect. Once symptoms appear, the disease is often in an advanced stage and has spread beyond the initial site. For that reason, upwards of 90 percent of those diagnosed with advanced or metastatic lung cancer do not survive.

Screening for lung cancer, particularly for those who are at high risk, can help detect lung cancer earlier. But, most diagnostic options have limitations. Some can give false positives or false negatives. Others are more invasive and can lead to side effects such as a collapsed lung or hemorrhage. Detection also is complicated because cancer cells can be located in nodules in areas of the lung that are difficult to reach and examine.

New Technology Brings Promise

The Monarch ™ Platform is a new technology that helps cancer doctors detect the disease sooner, which enables more treatment options and better outcomes. Monarch remote controlling lung procedureThe Monarch ™ Platform is the first FDA-cleared robot for diagnostic and therapeutic bronchoscopic procedures.

A bronchoscopy itself is not a new procedure. However, the Monarch ™ Platform bronchoscopy provides a better view of the lung interior and carries less risk. Unlike a typical bronchoscopy, which is limited by how far the scope can go and the visualization of the lung tissue, the platform’s robotic arms allow for more stability and dexterity once the Monarch is inserted into the bronchial tubes and can reach almost anywhere in the lung.

The Monarch ™ Platform uses small cameras with enhanced 3D mapping and real-time vision, so doctors have an enhanced ability to see the entire procedure. With this technology, false negatives are reduced to yield 70 percent to more than 90 percent accuracy.

With the combination of robotics, software, data science and endoscopic innovation, the Monarch ™ Platform is designed to help patients have better diagnostic and treatment outcomes and provide doctors with more capabilities and accuracy, which can lower overall healthcare costs.

Orlando Health is the first healthcare system in Florida -- and one of the first in the nation -- with this technology. While lung cancer detection and eventually treatment is the initial goal, we also envision that this technology will one day be used for a variety of endoscopic procedures.

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