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23 janvier 2020

Post-Doc Position on Bio-impedance for artificial palpation at LIRMM

Catégorie : Post-doctorant






Bio-impedance for artificial palpation: application to tumor mapping.


In the context of cancer treatment, minimally invasive robotic surgery (MIRS) allows the resection of tumors that are difficult to access using conventional techniques, with an increase in the quality of resection and functional consequences. In particular, for the tongue base cancer, surgery is the preferred primary treatment. For tumors affecting rigid organs such as bones, preoperative imaging (CT or MRI), combined in particular with intraoperative navigation, enables the tumors and its margins to be reliably located during the operation. This is not the case with soft tissues such as the tongue. Indeed, the soft and largely extensible tissues constituting this organ lead to an imprecise recognition of the tumor’s limits during the operation with a risk of insufficient or incomplete resection or, on the contrary, the removal of healthy tissues.

For this type of tumor, traditional resection methods (without robotic assistance) are performed using an open surgical approach.Palpation with the finger of the base of the tongue is performed by the surgeon in order to identify, intraoperatively, the contours of the tumors and thus guide the resection procedure. Indeed, this procedure allows the surgeon to establish a link between the mapping obtained by tactile sensation and the results of preoperative imaging. This identification is possible thanks to the difference in the elastic properties of tumor tissues and healthy tissues.

In MIRS, the oral channel is blocked by the introduced robotic instruments and by the endoscope which allows a visualization of the intervention site. Intraoperative identification of the tumor by direct palpation of the finger (as done in open surgery) is then impossible without removing the instruments (thus temporary stop of the surgery in progress) and any tactile sensation is lost.

The LIRMM (Laboratoire d'Informatique, de Robotique et de Microélectronique de Montpellier - UMR CNRS 5506) and the CHU (Centre Hospitalier Universitaire) of Montpellier are joining forces for the proposed work which consists in designing, fabricating and operating an artificial palpation device for medical applications. The post-doc position is funded by ISITE MUSE (Montpellier University of Excellence). http://muse.edu.umontpellier.fr/en/muse-i-site/

Post-Doc Objectives

The objective of this post-doctoral work is to develop a device allowing the palpation of biological tissues to identify intraoperatively the contours of a tumor, which can be used for robotic surgery and therefore in an obstructed environment. This device will exploit the notion of bio-impedance and will use signal generation and analysis equipment available in the laboratory. The development of such an innovative device represents a real international positioning opportunity for palpation applications in confined medical environments.

To carry out his/her work, the post-doc fellow will rely on the skills of the management team (LIRMM DEXTER team) in the fields of design, implementation and control of systems for medical applications and on strong interactions with Montpellier University Hospital clinicians.

The work could go as far as performance tests on an artificial bench or even on biological tissues.

The post-doctoral fellow will be located at the LIRMM (Montpellier) but will occasionally have to travel to the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Montpellier in which the LIRMM has offices and to the Montpellier University Hospital. These three institutions are very close to each other.

Applicant profile

According to the characteristics of this post-doctoral proposal, the candidate must hold a PhD in signals and systems, in mechatronics or in a related field. Skills in instrumentation, signal processing, and/or medical robotics would be highly appreciated.

Expected beginning

ASAP - First quarter 2020.



Yassine HADDAB

Professor at Université de Montpellier

Laboratoire LIRMM - UMR 5506 - CC 477
161 rue Ada, 34095 Montpellier Cedex 5

e-mail: yassine.haddab@lirmm.fr

Phone: +33 4 67 41 85 57



Associate Professor at Université de Montpellier

Laboratoire LIRMM - UMR 5506 - CC 477
161 rue Ada, 34095 Montpellier Cedex 5

e-mail: nabil.zemiti@lirmm.fr

Phone: +33 4 67 41 86 78


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