The 'Da Vinci' robot joins thoracic surgery in Tenerife

The Complejo Hospitalario Universitario de Canarias (HUC) has performed the first three Thoracic Surgery interventions with the Da Vinci robot. These are interventions for tumors of the mediastinum, located between the heart and the sternum, with resection of the thymus and thymic fat.

The advantages of this type of surgery are the high degree of precision, a less invasive surgery and the reduction of hospitalization time.

Doctors Nuria Mañes and Helena Hernández, thoracic surgeons who performed the interventions, highlighted that the surgeries "have gone very well and that the patients are progressing favorably."

Likewise, they highlighted the precision of the work that allows improving surgical results, especially with regard to the patient's recovery, as well as the possibility of undertaking more complex surgeries with greater safety, precision and radicality when the case requires it.

The Thoracic Surgery service will gradually incorporate other complex pathologies that are subsidiary to robotic surgery, such as lobectomies and pneumonectomies, such as surgery for bronchogenic carcinoma and other lung tumors, as well as inflammatory lung disease. Other tumors of the thoracic wall and pleura will be introduced.

The Da Vinci Surgical Robot allows for smaller incisions and scars, resulting in less pain and greater patient comfort, requiring less use of analgesia. The recovery and postoperative time is reduced with shorter hospital stays, which allows a more agile management of hospital beds.

It is a robotic assistant with four arms that transmits the movements performed by surgeons through a console in which they also have a 3D view of the interior of the patient. The surgeon controls the robotic arms, to which a specific instrument is attached that offers a 360º rotation capacity. All assisted by another field surgeon.

The Da Vinci robot is made up of three elements: surgical console, control unit, and vision tower. The console is the place where the surgeon directs the intervention by controlling the optics (which allows visualization of the inside of the patient's chest cavity) and the instruments using manual manipulators and foot pedals.

The control unit is the place where the patient is positioned and has four movable and interchangeable arms. And the vision tower which is the central unit for the elaboration and processing of the image and energy. The surgical table is synchronized with the robot.

The specialties that have been using this surgical robot at the HUC are Urology, Gynecology, General and Digestive Surgery and Thoracic Surgery.


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