Trinity completes historic surgery

STEUBENVILLE – The first robotic-assisted surgery has been completed using Trinity Health System’s new da Vinci Surgical System, a state-of-the-art robotic platform that enables surgeons to perform complex surgeries through a minimally invasive approach.

The robotic platform consists of a computerized screen that allows the surgeon to view the surgical site as a highly magnified 3-D image, and a control panel is used to operate miniature robotic “wrists” to perform surgery that would normally be beyond human capabilities alone. Incisions with robotic-assisted surgery can be as small as the diameter of a quarter and are virtually scarless.

Trinity is the first in the region to use the da Vinci Surgical System, offering its patients the conveniences of cutting-edge technology in their surgical procedures.

“The da Vinci System offers real-time, three-dimensional, high definition visualization, which allows for improved precision, dexterity and control,” said Dr. Patrick Macedonia, who was scheduled to perform two gynecological surgeries last week. “This allows surgical procedures to be even less invasive and more accurate than laparoscopic surgery, providing better quality of care for patients.”

The first surgery was a robotic cholecystectomy on a 27-year-old female with biliary disease. Her surgeon, Dr. Sam Licata, said the procedure went well.

“It took about 32 minutes and the patient came through without any problems and almost pain free,” he said. “The benefits that my cholecystectomy patient will see are quicker recovery, less pain post-operatively and a (quicker) return to the workplace.”

Licata said the new system allows them “to offer our patients more precise and improved surgical procedures with a faster recovery time and a shorter length of stay at the hospital.”

Trinity Health System is using the robot for gynecological and general surgeries to begin with, but with an entire team dedicated to robotic-assisted surgery, they plan to expand into colorectal, thoracic, urological and head and neck surgeries in the near future.

Macedonia and Licata, the two surgeons who were an integral part of initiating the health system’s investment in the da Vinci Surgical System, said they are thrilled to make the system a pivotal method of care for patients and are seeing the newfound results that each surgery will offer.