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Rochester General Performs First Procedure with Advanced Robotic Surgery System

July 17, 2014

Colon & Rectal Surgical Group at RGH Named National Advanced Observation Site to Teach Surgeons Latest Techniques & Best Practices

Rochester General Hospital, ranked among the top one percent of hospitals nationally for robotic surgery volume, is one of the first 20 hospitals in the U.S. to acquire the world’s newest and most advanced robotic surgical technology for minimally invasive surgery.

John Valvo, MD, director of robotic surgery for Rochester General who performed the first procedure on the new da Vinci Xi System said “Robotic surgery delivers many benefits to patients requiring surgery for a range of complex issues. These procedures are minimally invasive and reduce blood loss and post-operative pain. That frequently translates into shorter hospital stays and faster recovery periods.”

“As a national leader in robotic surgery for more than a decade, innovation has been integral to our success,” added Valvo. ”This new surgical system marks another important step in our ongoing ability to provide the most advanced surgical care to our patients.”


Rochester General Hospital, one of the nation’s top sites for robotic colon and rectal surgery, in collaboration with board certified colorectal surgeons Stephen Rauh, MD, and Steven Ognibene, MD will be designated a national Advanced Observation Site for the new da Vinci Xi System. Rochester General will host surgeons and their staffs from across the country who will come to learn the advanced techniques and best practices that can improve outcomes.

Stephen Rauh, MD, partner with Rochester Colon and Rectal Surgeons, PC, who operates at Rochester General, spoke to colorectal surgeons in May at the American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons meeting about this new technology and their designation as an Advanced Observation Site. “The da Vinci Xi technology is the game changer in colorectal surgery, enabling more surgeons to expertly perform multi quadrant robotic intestinal procedures.”z

“And what that means for some of our patients is the new robot will enable us to help them with certain severe colon and rectal conditions that we were not able to address as well in the past” said Rauh, “ We will be able to perform difficult procedures that will help those patients have an improved quality of life.”

The two most common colon and rectal conditions treated with robotic surgery are colon, rectal and anal cancer and diverticulitis. Several colorectal surgeries were successfully performed earlier this week using the Xi system.

More than 7,000 robotic surgical procedures have been performed at Rochester General Hospital since 2008.

The newly formed Rochester Regional Health System, encompassing Unity Health System and Rochester General Health System, offers robotic surgery with four advanced da Vinci Surgery Systems located at Rochester General, Unity and Newark Wayne Hospitals. This newest system replaces an existing da Vinci system at RGH.

In addition to its continuous advancements in robotic surgery capabilities, in March RGH introduced a new “OR of the future” surgical suite that integrates numerous state-of-the-art applications including equipment, technology, patient information and to create a safe, data-driven and efficient surgical environment that ensures superior clinical outcomes.