HMC uses robotic surgical technique
Dubai, January 29, 2009
In a quantum leap for surgical techniques in the region, a medical team in Qatar has carried out a series of operations using the latest generation of robotic surgical machines.
The three robotic surgeries were successfully carried out by the Urology Department of the Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC) and involved the removal of a prostate cancer together with the lymphatic glands of a 57-year-old patient, urethral reconstruction of a 17-year-old patient and a radical prostatectomy of a 69-year-old patient, said an official spokesman.
The operations were carried out in December 2008 using the robotic surgical machines recently introduced by Hamad Medical Corporation.
Under the banner of Leading the Change, HMC is part of a consortium of top healthcare professionals and organisations participating in the Qatar pavilion at the Arab Health exhibition at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre.
Abdul Razak Al Kubaisi, Assistant Managing Director Administration for HMC, said this was only the second time these minimally invasive surgical techniques had been used in the region, after Saudi Arabia.
"These highly sophisticated robotic machines are the latest in their generation and have been marketed for less than a year,'' he said.
Acting chairman of surgery and head of the Urology Department Dr Abdulla Al Ansari added that the US-made machine called Da Vinci is equipped with a three dimensional camera capable of magnifying tiny organs of the body 20 times enabling surgeons to reach regions of the human body difficult to access using traditional techniques.
"The robot can accomplish what the human surgeon cannot because of its ability to mimic the human hand within a small, contained place," he said.
Qatar's HMC is among 600 medical centres in the world to use these high technology robotic machines.
The three surgeries were conducted under the supervision of Prof Onhen Fellner, of Heidelberg University, Germany; and were carried out by the hands of Dr Al Ansari; Dr Garegin Khachatryan, urology surgeon at HMC; and Dr Khalid Al Jalham, HMC urology surgeon, currently under training at Heidelberg University.
"Robot-assisted surgery has proven to be a lot easier than laparoscopic surgery as it has magnifying capabilities that reveal every tiny organ of the body that need to be seen during the operation," said Dr Al Ansari.
The so-called Endowrist instruments, with 270 degrees circumference, transform the surgeon's wrists, hand and fingers into tiny instruments, thus allowing it to reach inside the body during an operation.
Robot machine were first used at international level in open-heart surgeries with punctures in the chest instead of splitting the breast bone to reach the heart in traditional surgery.
The robot is also used while the heart is still active during the surgery. The patient can also be discharged from hospital after two days. The system is also used in general surgery where surgeons use it to reach the most difficult locations inside the body. It is also used in obstetrics and gynaecology surgeries.
The Da Vinci machine means minimal invasive surgical procedures with less pain and loss of blood, minimised hospitalisation and faster recovery, the company said. – TradeArabia News Service