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Benefits of Minimally Invasive Robotic Surgery

Benefits of Minimally Invasive Robotic Surgery

The use of minimally invasive robotic surgery has grown in both capability and popularity over the past few years and has changed the landscape of surgery as a whole.

Dr. Ravi Nagubandi, Director of Robotic Surgery at Oroville Hospital, believes robotic surgery is not only here to stay, but very likely the future of medicine. “These operative procedures are now well-established, and the entire world is adopting these procedures at a very fast pace.”

Benefits for Doctor & Patient

The benefits of using a robotic system like the da Vinci® extend to both doctor and patient. The robotic platform allows surgeons a three-dimensional visualization, as opposed to the two-dimensional visualization provided by traditional laparoscopic surgery. The result is a more precise view, which aids in preserving delicate nerves and organs during the procedure.

For example, during a rectal or prostate surgery, dissection is in close proximity to the pelvic nerves. Those nerves supply the sexual function and bladder function of the body. “With the enhanced visualization and the ability to zoom in very close to the tissues, it becomes much easier to find those nerves and avoid injury, thereby preserving those functions for the patient,” explains Dr. Nagubandi.

Additionally, surgeons navigate the robot from a console—sitting comfortably, instead of standing for hours at a time. This eases repetitive stress on muscles and bones, preserving surgeons’ overall well-being.

Patients often experience the advantages of smaller incisions, faster recovery, and a reduced chance of a laparoscopic procedure turning into an open surgery.

Training: Practice Makes Perfect

Even surgeons who have done hundreds of manual procedures must complete hours of training to perfect the use of a robotic platform. According to Dr. Nagubandi, initial training involves approximately 35 to 40 hours of didactics and watching other surgeons perform the procedures, as well as learning about the machine and how to control the robot safely.

Once the basic training is complete, surgeons progress to performing procedures on animal and human cadavers. The final stage of training involves a series of live human procedures, performed under the direct supervision of a veteran surgeon.

At Oroville, surgeons across a variety of specialties participate, including general surgery, gynecological, colorectal, and urology services.

Putting the Patient First

Advances in technology always face a slight learning curve, but Dr. Nagubandi assures patients, their family members, and their referring physicians that robotic surgery is well-established and proven.

“I recommend patients and their physicians explore all the possibilities,” he advises. “Visit with a robotic surgeon and discuss in detail the pros and cons. We are here to clarify any doubts and we welcome any and all discussions to ensure the best path for the patient.”

To learn more about the minimally invasive robotic surgical options at Oroville Hospital, please visit

ravi nagubandi, md photo

**To listen to an interview with Dr. Ravi Nagubandi, Director of Robotic Surgery at Oroville Hospital, follow this link:

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