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Published on September 24, 2008

Mercy Medical Center offers new daVinci Surgical System

CEDAR RAPIDS-Mercy Medical Center, 701 10th St. SE, offers new daVinci Surgical System robot.The new system allows doctors to use a special console with hand and foot controls to manipulate tiny robotic arms and a 3-D camera eye to perform intricate procedures that require a high degree of precision. It's anticipated some of the first procedures at Mercy will be minimally invasive treatments for prostate cancer and gynecological issues.

"The daVinci robot offers a new level of precision and state-of-the-art tools for surgeons, enhancing the level of care provided to Mercy's patients," says Tim Charles, President & CEO at Mercy. "It's the latest example of our commitment to provide the very best technology to complement our compassionate care known as The Mercy Touch."

Computer-assisted technology -- FDA-approved for laparoscopic procedures since 2000 -- has been revolutionizing the way hospitals perform minimally invasive surgery. For example, prostatectomy performed with the daVinci Surgical System is the No. 1 treatment for prostate cancer -- the second leading cancer among men -- in the United States. Research has shown an improved and early return of sexual function, as well as a rapid return of urinary continence.

"Recent advancements in minimally invasive surgery, such as the daVinci robot, mean that patients have more alternatives to conventional open surgery than they did just a few years ago," says Jason Rexroth, MD, Linn County OB/GYN.  "For example, a woman undergoing a traditional hysterectomy might take four to six weeks to recover, whereas a hysterectomy performed with the daVinci requires only about two weeks of recovery time."

Because surgeries performed with the daVinci robot allow a surgeon to make small cuts versus making longer, open incisions, recovery time is dramatically shortened and patients can return to an active lifestyle much more quickly. Other benefits include reduced trauma to the body, reduced blood loss and need for transfusions, less post-operative pain and discomfort, less risk of infection and less scarring.

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