A new technology is changing the way surgeons operate on children. Doctors say a robot is helping with minimally invasive procedures.
Dr. Evans Valerie, a pediatric surgeon with Golisano Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida, says the da Vinci robot is now being used with pediatric surgeries. “Da Vinci robot is actually a more intuitive instrument. It allows us to see everything more accurately. And it’s just as safe as the other technologies we have.”
The magnified view is both 3D and HD giving surgeons a more detailed look than traditional laparoscopic surgery. The machine is attached to the patient and the instruments are placed in the patient. The surgeon actually operates the machine from across the room with the robot mimicking the surgeon’s hands. Because the movements are so precise, the robot can now be used on children. “We have kids that need to have their gallbladder removed. That can be done using the da Vinci robot. There are also kids that have really severe gastro esophageal reflux disease that would benefit from anti reflux operations that can be done with the robot,” said Dr. Valerie.
The robot offers patients a shorter recovery, less pain, and fewer scars. “The new machine moves mostly at the wrist and so the machine doesn’t need as much room and so these smaller movements can be made,” said Dr. Valerie.
Not every surgery needs to be robotic, so surgeons try to match the correct technology with the patient’s needs. “There are defined operations that we use the machine for, but there may be sort of nontraditional operation or cases,” said Dr. Valerie.
Patients as young as five years old could qualify for a robotic surgery. A new technology that’s helping children and adults improve their quality of life.
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