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Published on August 02, 2012

Spartanburg Regional performs first robotic splenectomy and weight loss surgeries

Spartanburg Regional has expanded its role as South Carolina's leader in robotic surgery, while adding three new surgeries to its long list of robotic procedures and treating patients with the latest technology offered by da Vinci®.

Spartanburg Regional's highly skilled and experienced team of surgeons, techs and nurses have performed more than 3,000 robotic cases, which is more than any other hospital in South Carolina. The robotic surgery program at Spartanburg Regional is one of the most comprehensive in the Southeast, performing robotic procedures for urology, gynecology, gynecologic oncology, cardiac and thoracic (lung).

The three new robotic procedures are: sleeve gastrectomy, revisional weight loss surgery and splenectomy.

"This robotic surgical system allows us to expand the breadth of our weight loss surgery program," said Dr. Jason Johnson, D.O. "We will expand the robot-assisted surgeries soon to include gastric bypass and LapBand® where it is appropriate."

Dr. Johnson said he was excited to move toward what is known as a single-site sleeve gastrectomy: one incision, giving most patients a shorter recovery than a standard laparoscopic surgery.

Christophe L. Nguyen, M.D., one of Spartanburg's most experienced surgeons in robotics, performed the splenectomy, or removal of the spleen. "Robot-assisted surgery is my preferred approach for many patients," said Dr. Nguyen.

The robotic technology has high-definition visualization and is Intuitive Surgical's latest and most advanced platform. Spartanburg Regional is also the first hospital in South Carolina to have two Si robotic surgical systems. The system is also equipped with the latest technology offered by da Vinci®, fluorescence imaging.

Fluorescence imaging technology allows tissue and surrounding blood vessels to be illuminated by a special dye when exposed to the near-infrared light, causing a glow-in-the-dark effect. This feature allows the surgeons to better map the patient's vascular anatomy and gives surgeons anatomical landmarks to improve surgical precision during kidney sparing surgery.

The robotic systems have several features designed to provide additional clinical benefits and efficiency in the operating room, many of which offer benefits to patients.

da Vinci Si equipment benefits:

  • Enhanced 3D, 1080i high-definition vision of operative field with up to 10x magnification – a 35 percent increase in visualization over other robotic systems that allows surgeons to see a patient's anatomy more clearly
  • Fluorescence imaging is an image guidance system available only on the da Vinci Si that is used to identify the kidney's blood vessels and for selective arterial clamping during kidney-sparing surgery for patients with kidney cancer
  • Surgical dexterity and precision greater than even the human hand
  • Updated and simplified user interface to enhance OR efficiency
  • Ergonomic settings for greater surgeon comfort in longer procedures
  • An open architecture that will allow seamless adoption of future platform advancements in robotic surgery.

Together, these technological advancements provide our surgeons with unparalleled precision, dexterity and control that enable a minimally invasive approach for many complex surgical procedures.

Most patients who have robotic surgery experience less pain, less risk of infection, less scaring, a faster recovery time, less blood loss, a shorter hospital stay, quicker return to work and an overall less invasive surgery.

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