Manual control of surgical instruments represents a sensorimotor control task with at least 3-6 degrees of freedom (DoF). The impact of haptic guidance on volumetric navigation tasks, such as milling of planned volumes for prosthesis fits or preserving sensitive tissues, is investigated. Interaction centered studies are performed to evaluate the usability of the assistance modes for navigation within a volume, along the surface of a volume and around forbidden regions. Results show that haptic assistance can reduce the number of constraint violations, if the virtual stiffness is high enough. However, haptic assistance also can increase error rates when counterforces are close to the absolute perception threshold, as a false sense of security can arise. For navigation along complex surfaces bilateral haptic constraints should be preferred, while unilateral constraints are sufficient for simple geometries. This study complements previous publications as a basis for a flexible rule-based selection or adaptation of modular haptic assistance systems.
© 2021 by Walter de Gruyter Berlin/Boston
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