J. Russell Davis, MD, clinical professor, University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Medicine, thoracic surgeon, Saint Luke's Hospital, discusses the benefits of robotics in thoracic surgery.
J. Russell Davis, MD, clinical professor, University of Missouri—Kansas City School of Medicine, thoracic surgeon, Saint Luke's Hospital, discusses the benefits of using robotics in thoracic surgery.
The biggest technological advancement in surgical oncology has been with robotics, Davis says. The newer evolution of robots has allowed surgeons to operate in more than 1 plane. When a lobectomy is being done, physicians need a three-dimensional view of the patient—a posterior and anterior perspective—to better understand the anatomy.
The older-generation robots, and even video-assisted thoracic surgery (VATS), only allow for an anterior approach. The newer robots give you more freedom of movement that is needed to perform more advanced surgical procedures.
If you are going to do lung cancer surgery, Davis adds, you need to be able to more clearly tackle these advanced procedures; otherwise, you are relegated to a simpler approach like VATS. These technological advances made in the space have improved the ability to diagnose and stage patients earlier without big interventions and, in turn, have led to earlier surgeries.