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• Watch a video of the robot: The Da Vinci Si Surgical System
• Use the DecisionAssist tool to weigh whether to have a hysterectomy or other surgery.
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The latest version of a surgical robot will allow doctors at Creighton University Medical Center to view surgeries in high definition with enhanced three dimension and magnification.
Doctors control a surgical robot's mechanisms from a console, and they are more precise than human hands. Robotic surgery also provides improved visual clarity.
Creighton's new machine, called the Da Vinci Si Surgical System, is used to assist one to two doctors in performing minimally invasive hysterectomies and prostate removals. It has magnification of 10 times the actual size, whereas other robots magnify 5 times the actual size.
The robot is the only one in Nebraska to have high-definition technology, which allows doctors to better see a patient's tissues and anatomy, said Dr. Jimmy Khandalavala of Creighton.
A hospital in the Kansas City area also has a Da Vinci Si Surgical System, said Tim Hoffman, who sells the machine in Nebraska. Da Vinci's website says a Da Vinci machine could cost from $1 million to $2.3 million, although the exact cost of the Creighton Medical Center's is unknown.
Procedures using the latest Da Vinci machine shouldn't cost more than the older-version technology, said Kelsey Archer, a spokesman for Creighton University Medical Center.
Dr. Jimmy Khandalavala at Creighton said many Nebraska hospitals, including those in Omaha, have older versions of the Da Vinci robot.
The Da Vinci surgical system is a popular option compared to open procedures because patients typically spend less time in the hospital and experience less pain and scaring, Khandalavala said.
For example, a patient undergoing a normal hysterectomy typically takes five or six weeks to recover, but that recovery period is reduced to two or three weeks when the advanced Da Vinci system is used, Khandalavala said,
Khandalavala said he has used Da Vinci robots since 2003 and has noticed significant technological advances from one generation of the machines to the next.
“Every generation goes by leaps and bounds,” he said. “I would never want to go back to using an older system.”