Aug 1, 2010  •  In Geek, Pregnancy, Science

NOELLE™, The First Pregnant Robot

While doing some research for my upcoming delivery, I discovered NOELLE™, the pregnant robot.

NOELLE™ was created in 2006 by Florida-based company Gaumard Scientific and has been increasingly used to train doctors and nurses deal with complications of pregnancy. The high-end model retails for $20,000 and comes equipped with several umbilical cords, dilating devices, vulva (for simulating post partum suturing), and even two robot babies (one birthing baby and one interactive neonate)!

NOELLE™ is controlled via a wireless PC and can simulate various birthing scenarios, including shoulder dystocia and PPH, vertex as well as breech positions, and C-section deliveries…all while producing her own speech and convulsions. The robot smoothly transitions between physiologic states in response to computer commands, and the user can choose from one of the many pre-programmed scenarios or create their own. Last but not least, both NOELLE™ and the baby robot can be monitored using regular hospital equipment.

Take a look at this video of medical students at Johns Hopkins using NOELLE™:

I know that a simulation, even with a robot as advanced as NOELLE™, can never fully replace real-life experience. However, the geeky side of me is fascinated with NOELLE™ and am glad that technology has progressed enough to give doctors/nurses in training access to different scenarios that they may not always come across with real patients.


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2 Responses to “NOELLE™, The First Pregnant Robot”

  1. Jessica Huffman says:

    I am a Registered Nurse and just graduated from nursing school last December. We had a similar simulation module at my school- it was awesome. My OB rotation at the hospital was pretty run of the mill, thankfully, so I didn’t get to encounter any post-partum hemorrhage or related OB emergencies. It was nice to go to Simulation Lab because we had to use critical thinking skills and put them into use on our Simulation Man/Woman. Do you watch Grey’s Anatomy? They had a similar ‘robot’ on there either this past season or the one before that….

  2. Kate says:

    Oh man! I love Noelle! I work for a hospital system and my department runs a nursing summer camp for middle/high school age students and we start every new camp session by going to see Noelle give birth. It’s realistic enough that we actually have kids pass out – unfortunate for the sensitive kids, but very cool for everyone else.

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