July 23, 2015

Springhill Medical Center is the first hospital in the Mobile Area to bring benefits of the newest da Vinci Xi robotic surgery system.  This system allows for “multi-quadrant” surgeries where the instruments must be able to reach from the pelvis to the chest.  This means less time under anesthesia for patients as compared to the current platform. 

"The use of robotic-assisted surgeries continues to grow at a rapid pace, and we are at the forefront of that growth with these two new robotic systems," said Mr. Jeff St. Clair, CEO and President of Springhill Medical Center.  Surgeons are completing the first procedures today using the new Xi at Springhill Medical Center. 

Many complex gynecological oncology and general surgery cases require either the patient or robot to be repositioned during surgery which takes time.  SMC’s investment in a robotic-system upgrade gives surgeons anatomical access from virtually any position, often eliminating the need for repositioning.

Dr. Forrest G. Ringold (pictured at right) of Surgical Association of Mobile, PA, uses the robot for single site gallbladder surgery, hernia surgery, weight loss surgery, colorectal surgery, and endocrine surgery.  He said the robot allows for a more controlled, precise operation. “With the robotic system, I can perform a complex minimally invasive procedure without a large incision.  This results in less recovery time for the patient.  The specialized robotic tools allow articulation that mimic my wrist movements.  Additionally, the robotic camera provides high definition, 3D imagery with ten times magnification of normal vision.  Specialized immunflourecent imaging allows me to identify subtle anatomy more clearly than ever before. I truly believe robotics is the future of surgery!” 

Dr. Danilo Herrera (pictured at right), OB/GYN with Bay Area Physicians for Women, said, “The platform of the new Xi robot enables us to do the more complex and challenging procedures in a minimally invasive way while improving efficiency and safety.  Any time that you can do a surgery utilizing a minimally invasive procedure instead of having to ‘cut the patient open,’ the patient benefits due to a more speedy recovery and faster return to normal life.  The Xi platform also allows us to do single incision surgery for selected cases.” 

Dr. Glenn Gallaspy, III, (pictured at left), OB/GYN with Azalea City Physicians For Women, notes another benefit. “The Xi surgical robot allows me to more safely perform complex surgeries.  Results are virtually scarless with less pain and faster patient recovery." 

Dr. William J. Terry, Jr., Urologist at Urology & Oncology Specialists, uses the robotic platform primarily for genito-urinary oncology cases, especially partial nephrectomy for renal cell carcinoma.  Also, he plans to employ the Xi to help on reconstructive cases for complex ureteral stricture disease including ureteropelvic junction repairs.  “I don’t think there is any question among specialists that a robotic approach offers quicker recovery time and less post-op narcotic use. The advantages also include smaller incisions, less post-op discomfort, and in some cases perhaps even better visualization when compared to the open version of the surgery. In my view, the primary advantage of the Xi robot over previous models is the ability to look and operate anywhere in the abdomen during a case and not be limited by the patient position or initial set-up.  The instruments are also longer and the optics are excellent.” 

Springhill Medical Center has offered the Mobile market robotic surgery capabilities since 2009.