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Smaller Incisions, Quicker Recovery Among Robotic Surgery’s Benefits for Urology Patients

July 31, 2019

Robotic surgery is increasingly used in urology, where the focus is on the male and female urinary tract, male genitals and male reproduction. Robotic surgery uses laparoscopic abdominal surgery to remove kidney stones, urine blockages and most commonly, to remove minimally invasive cancer cells in the kidneys, bladder and prostate.

Robotic Surgery vs. Traditional, Open Surgery

To understand the benefits of robotic surgery, it is helpful to consider the traditional operation. With traditional or open surgery, a large incision is made at the surgical site so the surgeon can insert their hands or their instruments into the area and complete the procedure. Because the area is small, surgeons must operate by feel.doctor having consultation with her male patient

In contrast, robotic surgery for urology uses laparoscopic abdominal surgery, with small incisions that allow a tiny laparoscope to be inserted into the incision and transmit images to a monitor in the operating room. The surgeon inserts small instruments into other incisions and uses the monitor to guide movement.

Because laparoscopic surgery has smaller incisions, it is minimally invasive. As a result, it allows for less pain, blood loss and risk of infection following surgery. That translates to shorter hospital stays and a quicker recovery.

But laparoscopic surgery alone also has its limitations. It can still be challenging for a surgeon to have the dexterity to manipulate instruments within a small incision or to see inside the surgical area. However, robotic surgery, using laparoscopic procedures, solves these concerns.

With robotic surgery, the robot consists of a surgeon's console, typically in the same room as the patient, and a patient-side cart with four interactive robotic arms controlled from the console. The surgeon directs the movement of the robotic arms as needed and monitors that process on the console. This set-up enables the surgeon to create the precise movements required for complex surgery, while making those movements more comfortable and efficient.

Robotic-assisted surgery techniques now account for more than 50% of gynecological and urological procedures. However, even as robotic surgery has many benefits, it is not the best option for everyone. If you have had previous intra-abdominal surgeries or intra-abdominal infections, your doctor may recommend other types of surgery that better match your needs.

If your doctor has recommended surgery, ask if robotic surgery is a possibility.

Choose Advanced Robotic Urologic Surgery

Orlando Health offers robotic-assisted procedures for adults requiring surgery for prostate cancer, renal cancer and kidney problems. Wondering if robotic surgery is right for you? Request a consultation with one of our surgeons to learn more.

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