Robotic Surgery

Robotic Assisted Surgery at EAMC
Less Pain, Less Scarring, Quicker Recovery

East Alabama Medical Center (EAMC) is dedicated to providing our community with the latest technology and procedures, and we are pleased to offer da Vinci® robotic surgery. The da Vinci® robot — which turns a previously invasive procedure into a minimally invasive surgical procedure — promises less scarring, less blood loss, less risk of infection and a quicker recovery overall.

The latest technology – the da Vinci® XiTM

EAMC is pleased to offer the latest in robot surgery technology – the da Vinci® XiTM. We are the only hospital in Alabama with this device, and it replaces our previous unit (the da Vinci S), which was purchased in 2010.

da Vinci Xi Surgeon Console

The XiTM basically works like the previous generation of the robot. Intuitive Surgical, maker of the da Vinci Surgical System, explains it this way: “[The da Vinci Surgical System] consists of an ergonomically designed surgeon's console, a patient-side cart with four interactive robotic arms, a high-performance vision system and proprietary EndoWrist® Instruments. Powered by state-of-the-art robotic technology, the surgeon's hand movements are scaled, filtered and seamlessly translated into precise movements of the EndoWrist Instruments.” The surgeon sits at a console and controls the movement of the tiny robotic instruments at the patient’s side with his or her fingertips, working from a high-resolution 3-D image. The da Vinci’s instruments are much smaller than hands, mimicking the motion of the human wrist on a miniature scale.

What is new about the XiTM is that it allows physicians to offer more advanced procedures and a wider range. According to a press release from Intuitive dated April 1, 2014, Gary Guthart, Intuitive Surgical president and CEO stated “The da Vinci Xi System’s new overhead architecture means that multi-quadrant surgery can be performed without repositioning the system, an innovation long sought by surgeons who perform complex procedures.”

The press release goes on to explain the new features of the XiTM robot:

"Compared to prior da Vinci Systems, the da Vinci Xi System’s key features include:

  • A new overhead instrument arm architecture designed to facilitate anatomical access from virtually any position.
  • A new endoscope digital architecture that creates a simpler, more compact design with improved visual definition and clarity.
  • An ability to attach the endoscope to any arm, providing flexibility for visualizing the surgical site.
  • Smaller, thinner arms with newly designed joints that offer a greater range of motion than ever before.
  • Longer instrument shafts designed to give surgeons greater operative reach."
da Vinci Xi Patient Cart

View the entire press release about the da Vinci Xi.

For more information on robotic surgery, Intuitive Surgical, the maker of the da Vinci robot, has information on their website at www.davincisurgery.com.

Robotic surgeries currently offered at EAMC include:

  • Robotic total hysterectomy or partial hysterectomy
  • Removal of the ovaries and fallopian tubes
  • Removal of uterine fibroids
  • Removal of an obstruction in the urinary tract
  • Removal of kidney or section of the kidney
  • Removal of cysts in the kidney
  • Robotic prostatectomy (removal of all or part of the prostate)
  • Robotic-assisted laparoscopic cholecystectomy (removal of the gallbladder)

Coming Soon

Trey Brunsting, M.D., a cardiac and thoracic surgeon, will be joining the EAMC medical staff in January 2015, and will start performing minimally invasive cardiac surgeries using the da Vinci Xi in February. The robotic surgery procedures that Dr. Brunsting will perform include:

  • Robotic and minimally invasive valve surgery
  • Robotic coronary revascularization (bypass surgery)
  • Minimally invasive MAZE procedure for atrial fibrillation
  • Robotic resection of atrial tumors & closure of atrial septal defects

The following physicians currently perform robotic surgery at EAMC: