Brisbane hospital offers ‘world-leading’ robot surgery

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St Andrew’s War Memorial Hospital has a major mission: To make robotic surgery accessible for all patients.

The private Brisbane facility has recently invested in the da Vinci Xi technology – described as "the best in the world" – which can be used for both complex and simple operations.

It is delivering minimally-invasive surgery for St Andrew's patients in the areas of urology, gynaecology, colorectal, and ear, nose and throat (ENT), with no additional gap fee for patients of approved procedures.

Benefits include shorter hospital stay, reduced pain and discomfort, faster recovery time and return to normal activities, smaller incisions with less risk of infection and minimal scarring, plus reduced blood loss and transfusions.

“Our goal is to make robotic surgery accessible for all St Andrew’s patients,” the not-for-profit hospital's general manager Mairi McNeill said. “This fourth-generation robot is considered the best in the world for robotic surgery, delivering more surgical precision and patient safety than ever before.”

The da Vinci Xi is optimized for complex multi-quadrant surgery, featuring revolutionary anatomical access, crystal-clear 3DHD vision, and a platform designed to seamlessly integrate future innovations.

“It provides a natural extension of the surgeon’s eyes and hands into the patient, but as with all robotic systems, the surgeon is always in control,” Ms McNeill added.

Gynaecologist Dr Caron Forde was impressed after performing the first robotic procedure with the new system at St Andrew’s in late 2019.

“I was very keen to use the articulating instruments, knowing they go around corners and allow better access to narrow confined spaces – like the female pelvis – and I was looking for safer access to my usual surgical area.

“The da Vinci robot effortlessly provided me with the ability to get into all the nooks of the pelvis safely,” Dr Forde said.

The fibre-optic technology's 3D vision gave her greater visualisation of all the different tissue layers, minimising trauma to surrounding areas.

“This improved accuracy will greatly benefit complex surgeries like hysterectomies, removal of endometriosis, and the management of ovarian cysts, in addition to a whole range of gynaecological problems – ultimately for the benefit of women,” Dr Forde added.

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