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Robotic Surgery at VCU Urology
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Robotic Surgery at VCU Urology

What is robotic surgery?

Putting the surgeon’s hands at the controls of a state-of-the-art robotic platform, robotic-assisted surgery enables surgeons at VCU Medical Center to offer patients a minimally invasive option for complex and delicate surgical procedures.

For the patient, benefits may include significantly less pain, less blood loss and scaring, shorter recovery times, a faster return to normal activities and better clinical outcomes. The robotic surgery system allows the surgeon to perform highly intricate and delicate operations with greater precision, offering the most effective, least invasive surgical treatment option available. See conditions that benefit from robotic surgery procedure.

Robotic Surgery at VCU Medical Center


Lance Hampton, MD, Director of Robotic Surgery


How is robotic-assisted surgery different from open surgery?

In traditional laparoscopic surgery, surgeons operate with long non-wristed instruments (similar to chopsticks in each hand). This technique can be awkward and cumbersome, especially in small places. The robotic system provides dramatically better dexterity, control and precision.

In normal open surgery, long incisions (as large as 6-12 inches) are required to access the surgery site. With minimally-invasive robotic-assisted surgery, the procedure is performed through dime sized (1/4 inch) incisions.

“The big challenge in prostate cancer surgery is sparing the nerves,” explains Dr. Hampton. “The da Vinci provides magnified 3-D vision, which greatly improves my ability to work around the nerves, minimizing risk and preserving the patient’s sexual function and continence.”

Dr. Hampton adds, “During kidney surgery, the robotic platform allows me to fully appreciate the intricate 3-D spatial relationships of large blood vessels around the kidney in order to minimize blood loss.”


Benefits of Robotic Surgery

For Patients For Doctors
less blood loss greater surgical precision
less pain and scarring increased range of motion
shorter recovery time improved dexterity
faster return to normal activities including work and exercise enhanced visualization
less risk of infection improved access
better clinical outcomes better clinical outcomes
fewer transfusions needed  


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Date Last Modified: May 22, 2014
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