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Rochester General Reaches Milestone in Minimally-Invasive Robotic Surgery; Strengthens Status as National Leader

March 11, 2010

Program ranks among top 4% in U.S and serves as a global observation center

Dr. John Valvo performs robotic-assisted prostatectomyWhen Rochester General Hospital’s Medical Director of Robotic Surgery, Dr. John Valvo, finished performing a robotic-assisted prostatectomy today, it was not only a potentially life-saving procedure for his patient, but it also a milestone as it marked the 3000th Robotic Surgery performed at RGH.  Rochester General’s burgeoning Robotics program is the largest in the region, and its volume places RGH among the top 4% of U.S. hospitals currently offering robotic surgery options.

Since the installation of its first daVinci Surgical System in 2004, Rochester General has become one of the nation's elite Robotic Surgery programs, and one of the most diverse, offering high-tech, minimally invasive options for urologic, gynecologic and colo-rectal cancer treatment.  Rochester General is also one of just four "case observation centers" in the world, and draws visiting physicians from around the country who come to observe the latest techniques being pioneered by RGH surgeons. 

surgery team looking at the daVinci SI HD systemRochester General’s robotic surgery program features two, state-of-the-art daVinci Robotic Surgery systems, including the latest generation "Streamlined Integration" (SI) HD version, which replaced the original system installed five years ago.  The daVinci SI HD system provides:

  • Enhanced high-definition 3D vision for superior clinical capability
  • An updated user interface for streamlined setup and OR turnover
  • Extensibility for digital OR integration

The SI HD is just the latest daVinci system in the RGH lineup.  In 2008, Rochester General Hospital became the first hospital in Upstate New York to implement the da Vinci S HD Surgical System, the world’s first robotic surgical system with Three-Dimensional, High-Definition vision  This system gives surgeons twice the effective viewing resolution for improved clarity and detail of tissue and critical anatomy and enables them to offer patients minimally invasive procedures – including treatment of conditions as diverse as prostate cancer and hysterectomies – that result in less pain, discomfort, blood loss and a quicker return to normal activities.

surgery team using the daVinci systemThe use of robotics takes minimally invasive techniques into a new era, further minimizing the physical and emotional impact of surgery on patients. Robotically-assisted MIS represents a third generation of surgery, one which builds upon the advances to open surgery introduced by MIS. Robotic technology takes surgery beyond the limits of the human hand, introducing precise, versatile instrument movement combined with three-dimensional visualization of the operative site. Minimally invasive surgery (MIS) allows physicians to perform many kinds of major surgery - performed through small incisions, which replace the large incisions needed for conventional open surgeries – resulting in less patient trauma and pain

Benefits of MIS

The benefits of MIS are numerous. Traditional surgery often requires a lengthy hospital stay and weeks of recovery. With minimally invasive surgery, the goal is to accomplish internal repair while leaving the body surface as natural as it was prior to surgery. Minimally Invasive surgery, including robotic typically results in the following benefits for patients:

  • Smaller incisions and less scarring
  • Less bleeding during the procedure
  • Less post-operative pain and discomfort
  • Shorter hospital stay
  • A quicker return to everyday life

Learn more about robotic surgery at Rochester General Hospital