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Important Information On Robotic Surgery Houston Residents Should Understand

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By Debra Butler


Robotic surgery is a form of minimally invasive surgical operation in which the surgeon is assisted by a small robot in their work. The robot has arms to which the necessary surgical instruments are attached. It is important to point out that it is not the robot that conducts the operation. Rather it is the surgeon but with a little help. There are a number of facts on robotic surgery Houston residents would find informative.

One needs to do several things as part of the preparation process before they undergo the procedure. Many of them are similar to the requirements for other operations. Such may include, for instance, the determination of platelet and hemoglobin as a means of assessing the risk of bleeding. If one is on drugs that may increase the risk of blood loss, they will be asked to stop them ten days before the day of the operation.

When you are taken to the operating room, you will receive some form of anesthesia (general or regional depending on the condition). The surgeon will then make some incisions in your abdominal wall to be used for the insertion of instruments. The robot is connected to an endoscope that helps to generate images from the site of operation. They will then sit comfortably in the computer station from where they will operate the robot.

Modern robotic equipment are capable of generating 3-D images onto the monitor. This effectively recreates the anatomical region for the surgeon. If you have been put on regional anesthesia (such as spinal block), you will remain awake and may have an opportunity to see the operation taking place. The robot is programmed to match the hand movements of the surgeon and these are transmitted to the tiny surgical instruments at the operation site.

There are numerous indications for robot assisted surgeries. They include cardiovascular operations such as coronary artery bypass and mitral valve repair. Others include hernia repair, reduction of tumor masses, hysterectomy, tubal ligation and prostatectomy among others. It is important to note that the method is not effective in the management of very complex operations especially those in which manual manipulation may be needed.

Compared to the open technique and other endoscopic options, there are a number of advantages that will be realized. One of them is the fact that greater precision of cutting can be achieved due to the computerized assistance that is used here. This makes it possible to operate in very small spaces without damaging the adjacent structures. The surgeon sits comfortably hence is less likely to suffer from fatigue that is common during long procedures.

There are a number of factors that may hinder the full utilization of this type of surgery. Among them is inaccessibility. Many hospitals are yet to acquire these pieces of equipment. For those that have them, the surgeons may not be adequately trained to use them. Most surgeons prefer to use techniques that they have used for a long time and making adjustments becomes quite difficult.

There is a risk of complications but this is a lot lower than that associated with the other techniques. The possible complications that may ensue include reactions to the anesthetic medications, bleeding from the surgical site and infections. In some situations, the surgery may be challenging leading to the use of alternative methods. Adequate pre-operative preparation will help reduce the risk of these complications.




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