Robot-assisted surgery introduced at Ludington Hospital

November 16, 2019

Robot-assisted surgery introduced at Ludington Hospital

November 19 Public Open House

LUDINGTON — Minimally-invasive surgery with a da Vinci robotic-assisted surgery system is now available at Spectrum Health Ludington Hospital. The first procedure utilizing the robot was performed October 24 by KellyAnn Vandendool, MD, a board-certified general surgeon at the Ludington Hospital.

An open house to showcase the new da Vinci Si Surgical System will be held Tuesday, November 19 from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. at the Spectrum Health Ludington Hospital main entrance lobby. Guests are invited to enjoy refreshments while trying their hand at a simulated da Vinci robot. Surgery staff will be available to discuss the new technology and showcase surgical capabilities.

The da Vinci system is a robotic-assisted surgical technology that enables the surgeon to operate through a few small incisions, like traditional laparoscopy, instead of through a large open incision. The difference is that instead of directly manipulating the instruments, the surgeon uses da Vinci’s multiple arms to translate hand movements into smaller, meticulous movements of tiny instruments inside the patient’s body.

The surgeon sits at a console, looking at a high definition, 3D image of the surgical site captured by a tiny camera on one of the da Vinci’s “arms.” The system provides the surgeon with enhanced vision, precision and control.

Spectrum Health Ludington Hospital is currently using the da Vinci Si Surgical System for general surgery and gynecological operations.

General surgeon Dr. KellyAnn Vandendool performed the first robotic surgery at the Ludington Hospital utilizing the new technology. “Robotic technology is moving us forward in minimally invasive surgery,” said Dr. Vandendool. “This sophisticated equipment enhances our abilities as surgeons because it’s capable of movements and flexibility beyond what the human hand can do. Patients are still under our care, but we’re able to perform at a higher level for the patient.”

Surgeons who will perform and assist in robotic surgery at Ludington Hospital include doctors Bret Autrey, Dan Gentry, Margaret Gustafson, Marian Fuller, and Keith Langlois.

Helen Johnson,  interim market leader, Spectrum Health Ludington Hospital, said the introduction of the da Vinci system is great news for regional patients. “This technology has been a game changer for patients of Spectrum Health, which now has 17 surgical robots throughout West Michigan,” Johnson said. “Quicker recovery, fewer complications, less pain, shorter hospital stays, lower readmission rates—these are all real benefits for patients. Providing robotic surgery locally is the type of exceptional care our patients expect and deserve.”

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