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Dr. Samuel Cancel-Rivera, an OB-GYN physician looks through a 3D imaging system while operating on a patient using the daVinci Xi surgical system, a minimally-invasive robotic surgery system, at William Beaumont Army Medical Center, May 2

William Beaumont AMC First to Operate with Latest Robotic Surgical System in DoD

William Beaumont Army Medical Center performed its first robotic minimally-invasive surgery with the daVinci Xi surgical system on May 2.

The robotic surgical system was recently acquired by WBAMC and is the most up-to-date robotic surgical system available in the health care field. The surgical system will be capable for use in: cardiac, colorectal, general, metabolic, gynecologic, head and neck, thoracic and urologic surgeries.

“Integration of a robotic surgical program to WBAMC is a very exciting venture,” said Maj. Jennifer Orr, chief, department of women’s and children’s services, WBAMC. “It supports our goal of providing safe, comprehensive, and top-notch care to our soldiers and dependents, while optimizing medical readiness and return to duty.”

Hospital stays and recovery times are minimized due to the surgical system’s small incisions, less than 1 cm length, which allow articulating instruments to enter. The instruments are capable of bending and rotating far greater than the human wrist.

wbamDaVinci“We can now offer both complex and routine procedures through a few small incisions, offering less blood loss, shorter hospital stay, and ultimately a faster recovery for our beneficiaries,” said Orr. “Previously, limitations of laparoscopic surgery, such as poor visualization and range of motion, could result in conversion to an open procedure.”

The surgical system is outfitted with a high-definition 3D imaging system which displays a clear and magnified view of the surgical site for surgeons. The image system also contains two surgeon-operated controllers.

While the robotic surgical system is new to WBAMC, 15 surgeons at the hospital are already trained in the robotic surgical approach, including three proctors. Surgeons complete a rigorous training process before being certified to operate with the surgical robotic system.

“WBAMC Surgeons have been using external facilities to perform the procedures,” said Orr. “Now we’ll be able to keep (WBAMC) patients here and offer facility continuity.”

According to Orr, who led the development of the robotic program at WBAMC, acquisition of the robotic system will allow WBAMC to recapture over 300 cases per year which were being performed elsewhere.

System capabilities range from bariatric surgeries and routine surgical cases to complex cancer cases for both adult and pediatric patients. The four-armed surgical system is optimized for highly complex, multi-quadrant surgeries as well as single-quadrant surgeries.

“We have a dedicated robotics team that is well trained and motivated for success,” said Orr. “In addition, we have a variety of board-certified, extremely capable and dedicated surgeons who are very excited that they can now provide this service to their patients within the walls of WBAMC.”

The first surgery performed by the surgical system was a successful hysterectomy by OB-GYN physicians.

“This is a major accomplishment and advancement for (WBAMC),” said Orr. “Acquisition of a robotic surgical system is a testament to our commitment to provide patients with the newest technology and treatment options available.”

William Beaumont Army Medical Center provides innovative, life-saving care to the largest power projection platform in the Army in support of any mission, anytime, anywhere while cultivating talented medical professionals into tomorrow’s medical leaders through education and cutting-edge research, making WBAMC the flagship of Army Medicine.

Author: Marcy Sanchez  – William Beaumont Army Medical Center Public Affairs Office

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