Historically, surgery adopted the principle of causing the least damage to patients in surgical treatment of diseases. In the past, incisions measuring up to tens of centimeters were made in surgical procedures (for example, surgeries performed by opening the chest wall). In due course, the developments in surgical tools and techniques brought about the concept of minimally invasive surgery. Minimally invasive surgery aims to minimize the trauma, alleviate postoperative pain and shorten the postoperative hospital stay, as it allows surgeons perform surgeries through very small incisions.
A groundbreaking development in surgical procedures
The first groundbreaking novelty was laparoscopic surgery in terms of minimally invasive surgery. Having found its most common field of use in cholecystectomy (removal of gallbladder), laparoscopic surgery enabled surgeons perform surgical procedures through only 3 or 4 holes on skin. This development has been followed by endovascular surgeries (procedures performed through lumen of blood vessels).
Robotic surgery is the technologic peak point of minimally invasive surgery.
What Is Robotic or Robot-assisted Surgery?
In robotic surgery, the surgeon controls the robot using a console and performs the surgery in this way. To highlight that the surgery is actually performed by the surgeon, this surgery is also called robotic-assisted surgery. The surgeries are basically laparoscopic procedures.
This robot not only enables performing the surgery through small holes on the skin and/or bone, but it also provides numerous advantages for the surgeon and the patient.
da Vinci Robot has been successfully used in robotic-assisted surgery around the globe since 1997.
Why Robotic Surgery?
There are two cameras in robotic surgery system. Unlike the laparoscopic surgery that reflects the surgical site two-dimensionally to a monitor, these two cameras provide three dimensional image of the surgical site for the physician. Therefore, the surgeon also perceives the depth of surgical site. On the other hand, the surgeon can magnify the image of the surgical site by controlling these high-resolution cameras. Thanks to the high resolution, quality of images does not impair with magnification.
The arms of da Vinci robot have the return angle of 540 to 720 angles. Those arms with a range of motion much higher than human wrist facilitates the movement for the surgeon particularly in narrow and high-risk regions. On the other hand, even the insignificant shaking in the surgeon’s hands is not sent to the arms as a command. Thus, a precision under a millimeter is ensured.
Tumor surgeries that last too long inevitably cause the surgeon to get extremely tired. In robotic-assisted surgery, the surgeon carries out the procedure by sitting on a chair and sending commands from a console, and thus, his/her concentration to the surgery site is maximized.
Robotic-assisted surgery can be utilized for surgical management of many diseases in many departments such as urology, cardiology, otorhinolaryngology, neurosurgery and general surgery.
Considering these features, robotic-assisted surgery creates a huge difference in surgeries requiring more sensitive movements than laparoscopic surgery.
Examples of Surgeries Where Robotic-Assisted Surgery is Successfully Utilized
Prostate Cancer (Radical prostatectomy)
Stenoses of Urinary Bladder and Urinary Tracts
Removal of Uterus (hysterectomy)
Removal of myomas
Surgical repair of vaginal prolapse
Uterine and cervical cancer
Surgery of Fallopian tubes
Mitral valve repairs
Coronary by-pass surgery
Repair of holes in heart
Surgical treatment of colorectal cancers
Gastric bypass surgery (Obesity Surgery)
Surgery of mouth, larynx and thyroid gland