Robotics and Women’s Health

Today’s unprecedented rate of technological advancement is transforming the practice of medicine. We can now do more for patients than any group of healers in human history. Along with significant breakthroughs in technology, physicians and surgeons are able to provide superior treatment options and, in turn, improve the quality of care we provide to our patients.

In the past, traditional gynecological surgery required large incisions that often resulted in the equivalent of a soda can or more in blood loss, tissue trauma and a hospital stay. A more modern advancement in gynecological surgery came in the form of the less invasive laparoscopic surgical methods that involve the use of robotically controlled instruments, tiny cameras and smaller incisions. However, traditional laparoscopic surgery has its limitations and has fallen out of favor for complex surgical procedures. More recently, cutting edge surgical procedures are done with robotic assisted surgical systems; these systems offer top-quality surgical care, significantly smaller incision ports, minimal blood loss, as well as decreased post-operative pain.

The da Vinci Surgical System has significantly advanced laparoscopic surgery. Surgeons control the instruments remotely and use enhanced three-dimensional images to operate with maximum precision. With the computer assisted technology we have a far greater range of motion and dexterity than traditional laparoscopic technique and the computer enhanced visualization of anatomy is critical when working around delicate and confined structures like the bladder. Overall, the robot allows for a range of motion far greater than the human hand. The incisions are typically only 8mm which lead to less scarring and shortened recovery times. In fact, approximately 60-70 percent of our gynecologic patients go home the same day and are back to work within 7-10 days.

When non-invasive options and/or medication fail to relieve individual symptoms, surgery is often an effective, next-step treatment option for a wide range of conditions. Hysterectomy, the surgical removal of the uterus, is the second most common surgery in the US; an estimated one-third of women will have a hysterectomy by age 60. In addition to our excellent individualized care, the Pocatello Women’s Health Clinic is committed to offering patients the most leading-edge technology available. Portneuf Medical Center is one of only two facilities in southeast Idaho to provide access to first-class minimally invasive da Vinci surgical system.

It is quite a lengthy process to become certified to use this technology. To become privileged to perform these procedures, surgeons must undergo extensive preparation that includes comprehensive computer training and hours of surgical observation. We are proud to boast that all the physicians practicing at the Women’s Health Clinic are experienced and trained in robotic surgery.

When it comes to your health, we at PWHC want the best for you. To learn more about this type of surgery, to discuss health issues or to schedule an appointment call the Pocatello Women’s Health Clinic at 208-232-6100