Welcome to the 21st century. No, robots will not be doing the job of surgeons any time soon. However, they are already making surgery quicker, easier and safer at Advanced Laparoscopic Associates.
What Is Robotic Surgery?
Robotic surgery is an option for a number of surgical procedures at ALA. The robot may not look like what you may expect: a vaguely human-shaped automaton similar to Star Wars’ C3PO. Instead, it’s a cluster of arms that can hold and finely manipulate tools, plus a high-tech camera.
The surgeon is still in control, but he or she controls the robot instead of the tools. The surgeon sits at a console and can manipulate each arm individually. The robot is also equipped with a high-definition camera, also controlled by the surgeon at the console.
Together, the camera and the surgical arms allow for unprecedented control and visualization of the surgical area. The camera provides the surgeon with magnified, high-definition, three-dimensional views that are much larger and much clearer than a traditional laparoscope.
The arms that hold the surgical tools can do fine manipulation. The video below shows a surgical robot manipulating a grape without crushing it. The console can be calibrated to have the robot arms move fractions of an inch for every inch the surgeon’s hand moves in the console.
The incisions required by robot-assisted surgery are smaller even than traditional minimally invasive surgery. That means less trauma to the patient, which translates to shorter hospital times, faster recovery and less risk of complication.
What Is Robotic Surgery Used For?
At ALA, we perform a number of bariatric and general surgical procedures with the assistance of our surgical robot. Procedures include:
- Hiatal, incisional and ventral hernia repairs
- Colorectal procedures
- Gallbladder removal (cholecystectomy)
- Gastric sleeve
- Gastric bypass
- Bariatric revisions
Although the technology is cutting-edge, it is also established. Each of these procedures or groups of procedures have been established to be safe and effective with robotic assistance.
We have embraced robotic-assisted surgery at ALA because we are dedicated to achieving the best outcomes for our patients. We would not be doing our jobs if we failed to employ every tool available. Sometimes, a surgical robot is the best tool for the job. Other times it is traditional laparoscopic or open surgery.
Want to learn more about what robotic-assisted surgery can do for you? Request an appointment at ALA. Our expert surgical team can tell you if you’re a candidate for robotic surgery.