3 Questions You Might Have About Your Proposed Robotic Surgery

If you're due to have a surgical procedure and your consultant has suggested you have it done using robotic surgery, you may be wondering whether it's a good idea and just what it entails. This guide should help put your mind at ease and answer the main questions that most people will have about robotic-assisted surgery.

What Is Robotic Surgery and What Does It Entail?

You might be feeling a little worried about placing your life in the hands of a robot. Well, you needn't be -- you're not being operated on entirely by a robot. Your robotic-assisted surgery is still performed by your surgeon. The difference is that instead of their hands being inside you performing the operation, they will be using a robotic arm and wrist purposely designed for medical use. Your surgeon will be operating the robot at all times during your procedure. The process will always be less invasive than the conventional procedure it's replacing. It will usually be performed through 4-5 strategically placed incision holes that are the size of buttons.

Why Use Robotic Surgery?

Your surgeon will be looking to perform your operation in the most convenient way for you and your life. The equipment will give them enhanced visualisation, dexterity and precision during your operation. It makes closing wounds easier, as the robotic unit includes a surgical stapling device. These gains result in less fatigue for surgeons who are sitting down for the procedure. This lack of fatigue means that your surgeon can perform a complicated procedure with less room for human error due to tiredness.

Additionally, it means that your surgeon can perform a complex surgical operation without the usual invasive process of cutting you open. As a result, you will incur a lot less scarring and have a faster recovery time with less time spent in a hospital. For some procedures, this can also mean your blood loss is minimised. You'll also have less post-op pain, reducing the painkillers you'll need afterwards. All of this will mean that you'll be able to return to your life faster than you would have following conventional surgery.

Who Can Have Robotic Assisted Surgery?

Generally speaking, anybody who is a candidate for a conventionally performed surgical procedure is a candidate for robotic surgery. Your surgeon will have assessed you to make sure that you're suitable for general anaesthesia and are in good overall health. For young and middle-aged people who have busy lives that they need to get back to quickly, this is a particularly good option due to the faster recovery time. All patients should benefit from improved post-op heart and pulmonary function as well as fewer complications.

For more information about your robotic surgery, speak with your doctor. They'll further explain why they think it's the best option in your particular situation.