START Center Introduces New Robotic Surgery ‘Platform’

by Morgan Montalvo

WOAI News 

San  Antonio’s START Center for Cancer Care is introducing a next-generation  robotic surgery system with multiple applications and advantages over  traditional, more invasive medical procedures, News Radio 1200 WOAI  reports. 

The  da Vinci XI remotely controlled surgical suite employs an overhead  array of programmable robotic arms that reach down to the patient, a  nearby physician’s console complete with manipulates and video  display, and a big-screen monitor for viewing by the attending medical  team. 

Physicians and company representatives introduced the Da Vinci XI to hernia patients this week at the START Center’s location on Medical Drive. 

“We  have the least amount of invasion into the body, so the incisions are  small, and the power of the robot is almost the same as your own hands,”  says Dr. Joseph Karam, a START center surgeon. 

Karam says da Vinci offers surgeons several features that contribute to  precise internal procedures, including magnification, different camera  angles, fluorescent imaging, blood supply monitoring for the treatment  area, and the ability to view specific anatomy. 

“When you’re doing something complicated, you never want less technology,” Karam says.

 Near-pinpoint-accurate surgery contributes to speedier recovery, says  Dr. Damon Mimari, another of the START Center’s surgeons who uses the Da Vinci XI.

 “The  patients just do better with this surgical platform,” says Mimari. “We  leave a smaller footprint, we have smaller incisions, they have less  post-operative pain, they return to their full activities quicker. If  there’s a hospital stay associated with the particular procedure, it’s  usually significantly shorter.“

Overall, patient outcomes are just superior when we can apply this platform in a meaningful way,” says Mimari. 

Karam says recovery times for procedures such as some hernias are often half when compared to traditional surgeries. 

“And  that’s not a painful recovery, that’s a very painless recovery of just  two to three weeks of just no heavy lifting and strenuous activity,”  says Karam. 

The da Vinci XI system can be used for several procedures,  including several types of hernias, removal of a gallbladder or  appendix, and gastric or colon cancer-related operations, “with the most  important part being to provide superior patient care,” Mimari says


To see DaVinci in action:

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