What You Should Know About This Less-Invasive Approach

June 29, 2020

daVinci XI robotic surgery toolAs more and more people look for minimally invasive treatment options, robotic surgery is playing an important role. With this approach, procedures are performed through small incisions using advanced tools and technology. Benefits for patients can include less blood loss, less pain, shorter hospital stays, less risk of complications and quicker return to everyday activities.

The Surgeon (Not the Robot) Is in Charge

A common misconception is that the robot is performing the operation. However, the surgeon has control the entire time.

During a robotic procedure, the surgeon sits at a console next to the patient and controls tiny instruments that are inserted into the body through small incisions. Miniature cameras capture 3D, high-definition views not visible by the human eye, and wristed instruments directed by the surgeon are able to bend and rotate farther than the human hand.

“The robot allows for better maneuverability in a small space,” says Brenda Kathman, MSN, RN, CNOR, Divisional Director of Surgical Services at Manatee Memorial Hospital. "It's essentially taking the wrist and finger actions of the surgeon and bringing them closer to the operative field for better tissue manipulation."

Robotic equipment continues to advance to support even better treatment and outcomes. Procedures at Manatee Memorial are performed using the da Vinci Xi® Surgical System. This advanced equipment offers advantages like better scopes and higher visibility to provide surgeons with greater capabilities.

Quicker Recoveries

Depending on the procedure, many patients who have robotic surgery can go home the same day and do not need a hospital stay. Patients can expect to be back to functioning in weeks instead of months, says Kathman.

Manatee Memorial was the first hospital in Manatee County to offer the da Vinci Surgical System in 2008, and the program continues to grow. Kathman says that 777 robotic cases were performed at Manatee Memorial in 2019. "Manatee Memorial Hospital had a 46 percent increase in robotic cases from 2018 to 2019," she says.

While traditional open procedures continue to be recommended in certain cases, minimally invasive robotic surgery can offer a less-invasive alternative for a wide variety of conditions. Learn more here about the doctors performing robotic surgery at Manatee Memorial Hospital and the procedures offered.

Procedures Performed

The following procedures are currently offered at Manatee Memorial Hospital with the da Vinci Surgical System:

  • Hernia
  • Gallbladder
  • Hysterectomy
  • Gastric sleeve bypass (weight-loss surgery)
  • Colon resections
  • Nephrectomy (kidney removal)
  • Prostatectomy (prostate removal)
  • Colorectal procedures

Our Robotic Surgeons

The physicians who perform robotic surgery at Manatee Memorial Hospital include:

  • Stacey South, MD – Gynecologic Oncology, Vice Chief of Staff and Medical Director of Robotics and Minimally Invasive Surgery
  • Stelio Rekkas, MD – General Surgery, Medical Director of Bariatric Surgery
  • Brian Allen, MD – Urology
  • Sean Castellucci, DO – Urology
  • Carla Chapman, MD – Gynecology
  • Riva Das, MD – General Surgery
  • Jose Erbella, MD – General Surgery
  • Jose Estigarribia, MD – General Surgery
  • Ricardo Gonzalez, MD – Urology
  • Howard Hermans, MD – General Surgery
  • Arunachalam Jothivijayarani, MD – Gynecology
  • Brian Schmidt, DO – General Surgery
  • Paul Toomey, MD – General Surgery

Please note: Individual results may vary. There are risks associated with any surgical procedure. Talk with your doctor about these risks to find out if robotic surgery is right for you.