Robots at local hospital!

Reported by Laila Morcos

Technology is alive and well at a local hospital. Physicians at Christus St. Patrick Hospital are getting a little additional help with surgery .. thanks to the help from their newest staff member.

It's a new surgical assistant for physicians with a very old name. "It has four arms that are attached to the patients," says Dr. Farjaad Siddiq.  It's the latest surgical technology in Lake Charles. The daVinci Surgical System is actually a robot.

"The surgeon actually sits on the console and operates on the console while the robot does what the surgeon does."

It's sort of like virtual reality surgery, with benefits you don't normally get from fantasy. "You can actually do laproscopic surgery, but it's in 3-dimension vision, so it gives you a lot better optics." Dr. Siddiq says the robot gives doctors more flexibility during the operation. "It brings the ability of rotating an instrument 360 degrees and also gives you freedom like a human wrist, so you can do an operation that's very similar to an open operation."

Local OBGYN Lee Monlezun just performed his first hysterectomy with the robot. "A laproscopic robotic hysterectomy was awesome." Dr. Monlezun says the ability to perform major surgery on a closed patient drastically minimizes recovery time. "The recovery of the patient is out of 5, 8, 10 mm. ports, not out of a large bikini cut or midline incision. It takes anywhere from four to eight weeks total."

And there's less scarring. The use of the daVinci Surgical System is expected to expand, and doctors hope one day, it will cause open surgery to become obsolete.

The daVinci Surgical System is at Christus St. Patrick Hospital and is currently being used for complex procedures .. namely prostate and gynecological surgeries.