Gynecologic Robotic Surgery
Thanks to the latest evolution in surgical technology, physicians at UC Davis Medical Center now offer an effective alternative to both traditional "open" surgery and conventional minimally invasive laparoscopy that may provide patients with the best of both procedures. With the assistance of a robotic surgical system, surgeons can now operate using only very small incisions while still maintaining the same or greater levels of precision and control.
Gary Leiserowitz, professor and chief of the Division of Gynecologic Oncology, discusses the benefits of robotic-assisted surgery for gynecologic cancers such as endometrial cancer. Read more about robotic surgery in our FAQs.
UC Davis surgeons offer minimally invasive and robotic-assisted surgeries for the treatment of cancer and other conditions involving the female genital tract. These conditions include:
- Endometrial and cervical malignancies
- Ovarian cancer
- Complex gynecologic problems
The state-of-art robotic surgery program at UC Davis has an experienced and highly skilled team of surgeons, nurses and technicians led by gynecological oncologist Gary Leiserowitz. Leiserowitz is trained in robotic-assisted surgery and perform a number of procedures each week using the da Vinci® surgical robotic system.
Robotic-assisted surgery is a leading-edge technology that is fast becoming a standard of care in select hospitals around the nation. Because they are less invasive and do not require large incisions, minimally invasive robotic procedure can be ideal for many gynecological surgeries to maintain surgical precision while minimizing recovery times and scarring. This includes many hysterectomies, which are commonly performed for benign and malignant conditions. Using the robotic system, surgeons usually have a better operating field of vision and a precise control of the laparoscopic instruments, which enhances safety and decreases operative blood loss. The combination of these advantages often results in a decreased hospital stay and faster return to normal activities.
Benefits to patients
- Less pain
- Less blood loss
- Less risk of infection
- Less scarring
- Shorter hospital stay
- Quicker recovery time
Of course, as with any surgical procedure, such benefits cannot be guaranteed. Successful outcomes always depend on the specific procedure and patient.
During the operative procedure the surgeon sits at a console near the patient and manipulates the robotic arms. An assistant surgeon is at the bedside next to the patient. Using a stereoscopic video camera, the surgeon has a 3D view of the operative field, which replicates what he or she would see during an "open" surgical procedure.
The surgeon can move manipulators with his or her fingers to control several robotic arms that replicate movements su ch as cutting and sewing. The surgeon is in complete control of the robotic arms at all times. In essence, the robotic arms become extensions of the surgeon’s arms and hands during the procedure