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Surgical Robots Benefit Patients & Their Medical Team

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Amanda Burns of Lebanon has had different types of minimally invasive surgery — she had her gallbladder removed laparoscopically, as well as robotic-assisted weight loss surgery.

To her, the differences were significant.

“I had a lot of pain when I had my gallbladder out, and I felt like I was down for longer than after my gastric bypass weight loss surgery,” said Burns. “After my gastric bypass surgery, it was hard to limit my activity because I felt so good. I was walking the halls of the hospital that same day.”

Donald Yarbrough, MD, from Samaritan Weight Management Institute, performed Burns’ gastric bypass procedure with a da Vinci surgical robot at Good Samaritan Regional Medical Center. The hospital, which has had a da Vinci robot since 2010, recently upgraded to a da Vinci Xi with an E‑100 generator, which offers more technology to benefit the patient and health care team.

Good Samaritan and Samaritan Albany General Hospital are the only hospitals in the Willamette Valley with this level of surgical robotic technology.

The da Vinci surgical system allows for finer, more precise movements and smaller incisions. It reduces complications and risk of bleeding, resulting in a much shorter hospital stay. Many patients often go home within 24 hours.

“Besides a shorter hospital stay, patients benefit from robotic surgery primarily through less pain afterward and quicker recovery than other surgical techniques,” Dr. Yarbrough said.

The Xi is the most current robotic system, with advanced aspects of robotic technology to improve efficiency in the operating room, expanded application of robotic surgery and improved outcomes for patients.

“Besides weight loss surgeries, surgeons can use the da Vinci for hernia repairs and colorectal surgeries, as well as urologic and gynecologic procedures,” Dr. Yarbrough said.

To learn more about robotic‑assisted surgery, visit samhealth.org/Robotics.