Hysterectomies Have Come a Long Way Thanks to Minimally Invasive Robotic-Assisted Surgery

Hysterectomies, Robotic-Assisted Surgery, Solace Women's Care

The reasons for having a hysterectomy may not have changed much in the past couple of decades, but the way hysterectomy procedures are performed certainly has. In the not-too-distant past, a traditional "open" approach was your only option for having a hysterectomy. The open approach uses a large incision in your abdomen to access and remove your uterus. Because the incision cuts through muscles and other tissues, the recovery process is understandably longer and more uncomfortable.

But today, many hysterectomies can be performed using a minimally invasive approach. Minimally invasive hysterectomies use much smaller incisions, so women can enjoy a faster recovery with far less discomfort. At Solace Women’s Care, Dr. Sejour uses the most advanced techniques for hysterectomy procedures, including robot-assisted surgery using the da Vinci surgical robot system.

Why hysterectomies are performed

Hysterectomies can be performed for different reasons. Uterine fibroids and heavy menstrual bleeding are two of the most common reasons. Other reasons include:

Since hysterectomies remove your uterus, you won’t be able to become pregnant after the procedure. If you think you might want to have children in the future, Dr. Sejour can discuss alternative treatment options, based on your medical history.

There are two main “types” of hysterectomies:

When a total hysterectomy is performed, Dr. Sejour might also remove the ovaries and fallopian tubes.

Robot-assisted hysterectomies

The term “robot-assisted surgery” is confusing to many people, but the concept is actually very straightforward. The first thing to know is this: Robots do not perform the actual surgery. Instead, Dr. Sejour uses special software to control a robotic “arm” that assists him in performing very intricate procedures or procedures in “tight” locations. Software used by the system “translates” the doctor’s own movements and motions into very small, extremely precise movements that are then performed by the instruments at the surgical site. Dr. Sejour is in control of the robot at all times during the procedure.

The da Vinci system is widely used in gynecology and in other areas of medicine as well. The system uses special tiny cameras to provide highly detailed, 3D views of the surgical site. Those real-time video images are sent to a viewing monitor, enabling Dr. Sejour to guide the instruments and perform the surgery without the need for large incisions. The instruments used by the robotic arm are able to bend and rotate far more than a human hand, which means Dr. Sejour has more control, accuracy and precision when performing the surgery.

Robot-assisted hysterectomy uses very small incisions, and it offers multiple benefits compared to traditional hysterectomy and other less invasive surgical approaches. Because of those small incisions, most patients experience a faster and more comfortable recovery as well as less bleeding during their procedures and a reduced risk of complications. Plus, women who have robot-assisted hysterectomies spend less time in the hospital, and they also have smaller scars.

Learn more about robot-assisted hysterectomy

Robotic surgery offers plenty of advantages for the right patients, but it’s not always the ideal choice. Women who have large uterine fibroids might not be good candidates because the fibroids can wind up blocking the cameras, preventing Dr. Sejour from seeing the treatment site. Some types of uterine cancer are also better treated with other techniques. Before deciding whether the approach is right for you, Dr. Sejour will perform an exam and take a complete medical history so he can recommend the best option.

At Solace Women's Care, we help women get the care they need so they can enjoy optimal health at every stage of life. To learn more about hysterectomies including robot-assisted procedures, contact the practice today.

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