The latest tool in robotic surgery is coming to UCHealth Memorial in Colorado Springs that will help surgical patients have a better overall experience.
Dr. Jack Tubbs says "The Da Vinci XI, is the 4th generation machine from Intuitive Surgical, it's a system that allows us to do laparoscopic surgery, a procedure that we have done for years and years, but now we can do even a very complex surgery."
If the thought of having a robot do surgery on you is unnerving you’re not alone. Dr. Tubbs says "I have had people tell me, ‘I don't want a robot working on me’. It's not the robot it's me doing the work, it’s still me. The machine mimics exactly what I do. I sit at a console and work the controls, I have 3D vision, the instruments are wristed, so they work exactly like my hands do. The 3D view is scalable, so even very fine motion is possible with the machine."
Traditional laparoscopic surgery was viewed by the surgeon in on two dimensions and required several people working together assisting the surgeon. Now Dr. Tubbs finds himself pretty much on his own. "With this it's done with all the instruments in my total control, so any movement is directly proportional to what I do on the console. I can even do complex prolapse surgery with ease, where before with laparoscopic technique it was very challenging."
Now because of robotic surgery, many of the procedures that use to require opening a patient up with a large incision, can now be done through a series of small holes adds Dr. Tubbs. "With the Da Vinci system, it’s virtually unnecessary to open most patients up. Other benefits are that patients see less pain after surgery, they have a much faster recovery and most of my patients, go home the same day."
The benefits to the patient don't stop there says Dr. Tubbs, "There are also lower readmission rates, lower infection rates lower blood loss. On almost all parameters there is an improvement. It brings surgery that use to be life altering for the patient, for their family, in their professional lives, into just a bump in the road."
Each surgeon who uses the Da Vinci system has to go through a rigorous training program that includes first observing procedures, then doing simulated procedures themselves before they ever work on a patient.