Robotic vs Minimally Invasive Surgery
Surgery has made significant progress in technique and application. In the past, most surgeries were performed with open incisions. This approach uses cuts several inches long to access and repair the body. Over time, doctors developed minimally invasive procedures. Using small devices called scopes, surgeons can access and view surgical sites through smaller incisions. For decades, this has been the preferred method for doctors and patients alike. Now, by combining software and robotic technology, arm-like equipment can perform the surgery robotically, guided by the surgeon.
Uses of robotic-assisted surgery
Robotic surgery is an effective tool in joint replacements. Millions of people suffer from joint pain due to arthritis, and many opt to replace the damaged joint with a prosthesis. Robotic-assisted surgery is popular in total hip and knee replacements. The accuracy of these devices also helps surgeons operate on sensitive organs like the heart, prostate, uterus, lungs, and many more. Robotic surgery will continue to expand to other procedures, and for a good reason. Here are 3 benefits in the operating room.
1. Smaller scars, fewer complications
The surgeon will have a special console and robotic arm to perform the surgery. The software will help the surgeon make small incisions, like in minimally invasive procedures. Smaller incisions mean fewer complications in the operating room. The patient will also have fewer and smaller scars, reducing the chances of infection and having to return to the hospital.
2. Less pain and faster recovery
Open surgery requires making incisions several inches long through tissue and muscle. This method increases blood loss and recovery time. Minimally invasive procedures improved this significantly. However, robotic surgery can focus on the surgical area without damaging nearby tissue. Patients can heal faster and enjoy quicker recovery when undergoing procedures like joint replacements.
3. Improving your surgeon’s skillset
Robotic surgery does not replace the surgeon. Instead, this is a tool that enhances the capabilities of the surgeon. The software will map out the procedure beforehand to reduce the chances of error. The robotic device also helps the surgeon be more precise with incisions and limits movement outside the surgical area. Robotic surgery makes surgeons more efficient and effective.
Will robots replace minimally invasive techniques?
The future of surgery will involve both robotics and other factors like artificial intelligence. However, these strategies won’t replace minimally invasive techniques in the immediate future. Some procedures may continue to be faster and more cost-effective using a minimally invasive surgical approach. Robotic surgery can be expensive for hospitals, but this approach is growing in popularity at smaller ambulatory surgical centers (ASCs). Robotic surgery is especially important for procedures requiring fine motor skills and precision. As demand for this technology grows, robotic surgery may become the go-to approach for more and more types of surgery.