da Vinci® - How does it work?
Working from a computer console, the surgeon makes dime-size incisions and guides the robotic arms with attached instruments and a tiny camera through the incisions. There is also an assistant surgeon, anesthesiologist and an operating room nurse by the patient’s bed, along with the robotic equipment.
From the computer console, the surgeon looks through a camera that can magnify the organs and other structures inside the body by 10x. Most laparoscopic surgeries provide doctors with 4x magnification. The movement of the surgeon’s fingers is transmitted (via the computer console) to the instrument tips on the other robotic arms, mimicking the movements of the surgeon’s hands and wrists. This gives the doctor an ambidextrous capability and surgical precision.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Will my insurance cover my surgery if it is robot-assisted?
A: Once your insurance approves your surgery, it will be covered if your surgeon uses the da Vinci® robot as well. The robot is simply a tool used by your surgeon to improve the outcome for your surgery.
Q: Why is the robot called the da Vinci® Surgical System?
A: The name “da Vinci” was chosen because Leonardo da Vinci invented the first robot. He was well known for using unparalleled anatomical accuracy and three-dimensional details to bring his masterpieces to life. The da Vinci® Surgical System provides surgeons with enhanced detail and simulates an open surgical environment while allowing operation through tiny incisions.
Q: Can the surgeon feel anything inside the patient's chest or abdomen while using the da Vinci® Surgical System?
A: Yes. The system relays force feedback sensations from the operative field back to the surgeon throughout the procedure. Force feedback provides a substitute for tactile sensation.
Q: Has the da Vinci® Surgical System been cleared by the FDA?
A: The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has cleared the da Vinci® Surgical System for a wide range of procedures. Please see the FDA Clearance page for specific clearances and representative uses.
For more information about College Station Medical Center’s Robotic Surgery, email or call 979-764-5179.