By: Jen Russon
For over a decade, Broward Health Coral Springs has provided surgeons the ability to perform complex surgeries using the assistance of an advanced robot.
Robotic surgery consists of a surgeon console, patient-side cart, and vision cart, allowing doctors to view 3DHD imagery of organs, vessels, and lymph nodes while operating on patients with mechanical arms ingeniously programmed to wield the smallest of tools.
“The whole goal is to enhance medical care,” said urologist Azeem Sachedina, M.D., “and from that perspective, there is no question robotic surgery is an absolute game changer.”
Using the da Vinci surgical system, robotic-assisted procedures allow surgeons to control mechanical arms that bear surgical instruments and a camera. Robotics can sometimes enable surgeons to make smaller incisions rather than traditional large incisions, which in some cases may lead to a faster recovery with less pain. With surgeries such as hysterectomies and myomectomies and prostate, gastrointestinal, and other procedures, outcomes can benefit the patient.
Zoyla Almeida, M.D., a gynecologic oncologist and Chair of Robotics at Broward Health Coral Springs, has done over 2,000 robotic procedures to date. Of those surgeries, there have been few limits to which reproductive health issues she can correct, including hysterectomies for both cancerous and benign conditions, pelvic prolapse, and treatment for endometriosis, which can cause severe blood loss, pelvic pain, and infertility.
She said that the da Vinci system, in many cases, can sometimes see much more of the human body by using impossibly small cameras that capture high-definition views of organs and surrounding blood vessels and tissue.
Broward Health urologist Michael Tyler, M.D., also continues to see the benefits from technological advantages provided by robotic-assisted surgery.
“The difference between traditional and robotic surgery is significant. With the robotic technique, we can really control the surgical environment. When I am at the console, it’s basically like I am at the bedside,” he said.
Dr. Almeida agrees; adding robotic technology in the operating room may allow her to see and correct endometriosis and ovarian cysts in patients who may have suffered for years before exploring robotic surgery as an option.
“Women know their bodies well, and if they think something is off, they should definitely seek attention immediately and not ignore it,” said Almeida. “With robotic technology like we have today, complex surgeries may no longer need to be invasive as they were years ago.”
Broward Health Coral Springs has acquired additional and more upgraded robots to fulfill patient and physician demands within the last few years. Broward Health surgeons say the demand for minimally invasive robotic surgery is gratifying.
Mark Shachner, M.D., at Broward Health Coral Springs, operated on patients experiencing digestive issues with the da Vinci and called it an “enormous revolution.”
To learn more about minimally invasive robotic surgeries offered at Broward Health Coral Springs, click here.
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- Jen Russon is a freelance writer and English Language Arts teacher. She has published two novels to Amazon Kindle and lives in Coral Springs with her family.
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