Robotic surgery showcased in China by Stanford's Dr. Black, Dr. White launches surgical robotic programme at Montefiore

Bronx, Shanghai 06 May 2002Computer Motion Inc., a developer of surgical robotic systems serving over 900 customers and 3000 surgeons in 32 countries, is working with Montefiore Medical Center in Bronx, New York, to provide significant educational and technical support for the establishment of a robotic centre of excellence for surgical procedure development and physician training programmes. The company also delivered robotic equipment for a series of paediatric robotic cardiac surgeries which were performed at three hospitals in China under the guidance of Dr. Michael D. Black, Chief of Paediatric Cardiac Surgery at Stanford University Medical Center.


Dr. Alan White, Director of the Montefiore Institute for Minimally Invasive Surgery, is a pioneer of advanced laparoscopic surgery techniques and has significant clinical experience with the use of both the Zeus Robotic Surgical System and the competing surgical robot. Dr. White was a key member of the surgeon team which performed cases for the company's recently submitted laparoscopic FDA study. Dr. White was instrumental in providing a clear vision for the nature of the collaboration between the Institute and Computer Motion.

Dr. White commented: "The future of minimally invasive surgery depends on the surgeon's ability to successfully integrate high technology and advanced techniques into medical practice. The Institute's mission is to move the practice of robotically assisted minimally invasive surgery forward by training as many residents and surgeons as possible." As Dr. White continued: "With the addition of Computer Motion's suite of products, the Institute continues its leadership position as the premier training centre on the east coast for advanced minimally invasive and robotic surgical techniques."

The hospital purchased two Zeus Systems, an Aesop Robotic Endoscope Positioner and a Socrates Tellecolaboration System. The systems are seamlessly integrated in the operating room using the Hermes Control Center. The company and the Institute intend to collaborate closely on educational grant submissions, joint participation in product and procedure development, and creating the robotic residency programme for Montefiore Medical Center.

Montefiore Medical Center, the University Hospital and Academic Medical Center for the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, is an internationally recognised hospital specialised in patient care, education, and research and community services. Montefiore provides treatment programmes for patients with all major illnesses and has distinguished centres of excellence in heart care, cancer care, children's health, women's health, and surgery.

In Beijing, Dr. Black visited the Navy General and Chao Yang Hospitals where he used the Aesop Robotic Endoscopic Positioner with total port access with and without the use of the Alpha Virtual Port to repair several congenital heart defects. Dr. Zhai Gao Zhang of Navy General Hospital and Dr. Yong Chun Zhao invited Dr. Black to demonstrate robotic paediatric surgery techniques.

Dr. Black also travelled to the Fudan University Shanghai Children's Hospital and performed surgeries on infant and neonatal patients born with complex congenital heart disease. The Shanghai surgical team in addition to Dr. Michael D. Black consisted of Dr. Jia Bing and Dr. Zhang Geng Cheng. Each of these minimally invasive surgeries accomplished their goal, a successful surgical result, reduced tissue trauma, a cosmetically pleasing incision, and reduced surgical times. In addition, the children's families were delighted and surprised to receive their children back with only Band-Aid sized dressings as a reminder of their complex procedures.

Dr. Michael D. Black commented: "It was an honour and a privilege to work with such highly skilled and motivated surgeons to bring these new techniques and technologies into China for the first time. The cases went very smoothly, thanks in part to the advanced abilities of my Chinese peers. The integration of robotics in my practice in the United States has followed a logical gradient path, first with Aesop and then to much more complex procedures enabled by Zeus. My colleagues in China expressed great interest in moving rapidly to develop their own robotics programmes."

Bob Duggan, Chairman and CEO of Computer Motion, stated: "China represents an extraordinary opportunity for Computer Motion. We recently signed a two-year, 50 Aesop unit distribution agreement with a prominent distributor of high-tech medical devices in the People's Republic of China. We have a letter of credit for the first five units that will ship this quarter. We look forward to new and significant relationships with China's health care providers as they move to adopt the technologies needed to bring the highest quality of care to their nation's adults and children."

More news on procedures with Computer Motion's robotic systems is to be found in the following VMW articles:

Leslie Versweyveld

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