da Vinci enhances the art of surgery at Northwest Hospital & Medical Center

Seattle 13 November 2007In an expansion of its world-class surgical programmes and advanced surgical technologies, Northwest Hospital & Medical Center is now home to the da Vinci S Robotic Surgical System. Northwest Hospital is the first facility in the Seattle area to install the da Vinci S Surgical System, the most advanced da Vinci system to-date, incorporating 3D, high-definition, visualization and many capabilities earlier versions did not have.


Named after the legendary artist, who invented the first robot and who used three-dimensional detail to bring his art to life, the da Vinci Surgical System creates a "virtual" extension of the surgeon's eyes and hands, using 3D, high-definition vision and four "robotic hands" as extensions of the surgeon's own to go where human hands typically cannot.

Used for a wide variety of minimally invasive surgical procedures, da Vinci offers a state-of-the-art alternative to conventional laparoscopic and traditional open surgery methods. Guided by the surgeon, who sits at a separate viewing console, the da Vinci robot translates the natural movements of the surgeon's hands, wrists and fingers into micro-movements of the robot in order to create and maneuver within smaller incisions and to perform delicate and complex procedures with greater precision and dexterity.

da Vinci also offers patients a variety of benefits, including shorter hospital stays; less pain and scarring; less risk of infection; less blood loss and fewer transfusions; faster recovery; and quicker return to normal activities.

"An important part of the Northwest Hospital vision for patient care is to explore and provide the latest in minimally-invasive treatments wherever possible", stated Bill Schneider, Northwest Hospital CEO. "We are proud to add the da Vinci S Surgical System to other advanced, minimally invasive technologies at the hospital, such as Gamma Knife and Deep Brain Stimulation that support our commitment to offering patients better surgical experiences and outcomes."

Recently installed in one of the hospital's operating rooms, da Vinci was used to perform its very first procedures on November 7, 2007. Over the next year, the hospital expects to expand the use of da Vinci to enhance its services in gynaecologic, cardiac, urologic and a number of other surgical areas.

Opened in 1960, Northwest Hospital & Medical Center is a full-service, non-profit community hospital located minutes north of downtown Seattle. With 281 licensed beds, more than 1600 employees and all private rooms, it offers some of the most innovative, technologically advanced medical care available. Major clinical programmes and services include emergency services; critical care; cardiac care; stroke centre; cancer care; childbirth services; bariatric surgery; sports medicine; medical rehabilitation; neurosciences; diagnostic imaging; geropsychiatric center; Gamma Knife Center; laboratory services; and education and wellness programmes, among others.

More news about the da Vinci Robotic Surgical System is available in the VMW July 2007 article Robotic technology provides less invasive procedure for mitral valve repair.

Leslie Versweyveld

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