Closed chest surgery on beating heart performed at Cleveland Clinic with Estech MIS tools

Danville 29 July 2002Dr. Jose L. Navia, MD, of the Cleveland Clinic, performed a minimally invasive heart surgery procedure using both the Estech Access and Stabilisation System and the Da Vinci Surgical Robot manufactured by Intuitive Surgical Inc. The combination of these two technologies allows the surgeon to operate on a beating heart while minimising the need for access incisions.


The Estech retractor for access to the heart is a patented retractor device which provides access to the chest cavity through small "windows", allowing the surgeon to minimise access incisions. The Estech Stabiliser System isolates and controls the artery on the surface of the heart, allowing the surgeon to attach the bypass graft without stopping the heart.

Several stabiliser devices are available for different surgical techniques. The stabilisation device which Dr. Navia used, requires only a very small access window and is malleable, enabling it to conform to the shape of the heart surface.

Dr. Navia applied the Da Vinci Robot through a closed chest to isolate the left internal mammary artery, to be used as a bypass graft, through 3 ten-millimeter ports. The Estech Access and Stabilisation System was inserted though a small incision, or "window", between the ribs, allowing Dr. Navia to bypass a blockage in the left anterior descending coronary artery (LAD) without stopping the heart.

Commenting on the Estech Access and Stabilisation System, Dr. Navia stated: "It was perfect and made the procedure easier." Estech CEO Art Bertolero added: "We are always pleased when we can enable techniques that offer patients less invasive procedures. We are excited to be working with Dr. Navia and the Cleveland Clinic."

Estech and Dr. Navia are currently co-ordinating trials on Estech's new Remote Access Perfusion Products to enable other minimally invasive cardiac procedures. Estech Inc., founded in 1996, is a recognised expert in Least Invasive Cardiac Surgery (LICS), offering a complete system of products for both beating heart and stopped heart surgical approaches.

The company's beating heart products have been used in more than 40.000 procedures. Estech has training, product support and distribution in the United States and Europe. More news on Estech and Intuitive Surgical is available in the VMW February 2002 article Intuitive's da Vinci robot and Estech's RAP catheter used in USA's first closed-chest heart bypass operation.

Leslie Versweyveld

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