How is robotic gynecologic surgery different than traditional gynecologic surgery?
While gynecologic surgery has become less invasive, often using laproscopic approaches, the da Vinci® S HD™ Surgical System allows some procedures to be performed more quickly and easily. This is because the da Vinci Surgical System delivers increased clinical capability while maintaining the same look and feel of open surgery.
A number of procedures that could not be performed using traditional minimally invasive technologies can now be performed using the da Vinci Surgical System. The advanced features and extensive EndoWrist® instrumentation of the da Vinci Surgical System enable surgeons to perform more procedures through 1-2 centimeter incisions.
Conventional laparoscopic approaches also require several dime-sized incisions, which are used to introduce narrow-shafted instruments. The surgeon and assistants maneuver the instruments from outside the body, under vision provided by a surgical camera. Conventional laparoscopy relies on the use of rigid, hand-held instruments and visualization provided by a standard 2-D video monitor. While this enables small incisions, it limits the surgeon's depth perception, dexterity and precision. Standing at the patient's side, the surgeon must operate in a counterintuitive fashion, moving the instrument handle in the opposite direction of where he or she intends to move the instrument tip. The surgeon maneuvers the instruments while looking up at the 2-D view of the operating field projected on a table-side video monitor and must instruct an assistant on how to position the surgical camera.
In contrast, da Vinci robotic surgery incorporates state-of-the-art video and robotic technologies that provide natural depth perception and allow a surgeon's hand movements to be scaled, filtered and translated into precise micro-movements of tiny instruments at the operative site. The superior visualization, enhanced dexterity, precision and control enable the surgeon to perform complex procedures — like hysterectomies — through dime-sized operating "ports."
How does robotic gynecologic surgery benefit the patient?
By enhancing surgical capabilities, the da Vinci Surgical System helps to improve clinical outcomes and redefine standards of care. Patients experience reduced trauma to the body, reduced blood loss and need for transfusions, less postoperative pain and discomfort, less risk of infection, shorter hospital stay, faster recovery and return to normal daily activities, and less scarring.
How is Saint Francis using robotic surgery for gynecologic surgeries?
We have combined the talents of top specialists with the wonders of minimally invasive robotic surgery to bring you new hope in the fight against cancer. Joseph H. Jacob, MD, FACOG, FACS, the region's only gynecologic oncologist, along with Ann E. Behrend-Uhls, MD, FACOG, Wendi M. Carns, MD, FACOG and Jessica Lemmons, MD, FACOG, obstetrician/gynecologists at Saint Francis use the new ultraprecise da Vinci® HD™ Surgical System at Saint Francis Medical Center to target tumors through tiny incisions with remarkable results.
These physicians already perform minimally invasive procedures. Now, the robot allows him to utilize four robotic arms, high-definition cameras and 3-D visualization to achieve even better outcomes.
In particular, Saint Francis is using the robot to perform the most-precise and least-invasive hysterectomy available today. Approximately 600,000 hysterectomies are performed in the United States each year, making it the second most common surgical procedure.
Saint Francis is using da Vinci robotic surgery for the following procedures:
- Cancer-related hysterectomy
- Noncancer-related hysterectomy
- Surgery for uterine or vaginal prolapse (which typically causes urinary incontinence)
Meet the Surgeons
Ann E. Behrend-Uhls, MD
Wendi M. Carns, MD
Joseph H. Jacob, MD, FACOG, FACS
Jessica D. Lemmons, MD
Sara Anne Meyer, MD