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Flushing Hospital marks milestone use of surgical robot

The great inventor never saw the device named for him, but the da Vinci robot employed at Flushing Hospital Medical Center has proven a remarkable innovation in treating surgery patients and hastening their recovery.

Recently, the hospital marked the 100th procedure the surgical device performed since debuting several months ago. Most of its cases were for general surgery or urological, gynecological or bariatric purposes, but the robot named for famed inventor and artist Leonardo da Vinci may soon handle more complex medical matters, according to Flushing Hospital spokesman Michael Hinck.

“The potential for the robot is limitless,” he said. “We’re performing a half-dozen cases per week and we’re continuing to work with a full team of doctors who are using it and training to do more and more procedures.”

Employed at other hospitals across the country, the da Vinci robot stands above the surgery field, where the doctor and staff hover above a patient on the operating table. With the robot in place, a trained surgeon sits at a nearby console and uses his/her hands to control the robot, which mimics those moves on the patient.

The da Vinci surgical system. (photos courtesy of Flushing Hospital)
The da Vinci surgical system. (photos courtesy of Flushing Hospital)

Hinck said that the robot, equipped with state-of-the-art technology, makes smaller and more precise surgical cuts than human counterparts. This not only results in a more accurate operation, but also quickens recovery time for patients and reduces blood loss, pain and scar tissue development.

The robot also features minimally invasive, single site technology which enables a surgeon operating on the abdomen to place a small incision through the patient’s navel, leaving virtually no scar.

Flushing Hospital plans to expand da Vinci’s use in the operating room and is training more surgeons to use the device.

“[Its use is] growing both in the number and breadth of procedures weekly,” Hinck added.

For more information regarding the da Vinci surgical system, call Flushing Hospital at 718-670-3135.

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