August 23, 2006 07:15 ET

ORLive presents: da Vinci Hysterectomy, the Next Frontier in Minimally Invasive Gynecologic Surgery

Live Webcast From University of Michigan Hospital: Wednesday, September 20, 2006 From 3-4 PM EDT (19:00 UTC)

ANN ARBOR, MI -- (MARKET WIRE) -- August 23, 2006 --, the University of Michigan Health System and Intuitive Surgical, Inc. will present a Webcast of a da Vinci® (robotic) Hysterectomy, broadcast live from the University of Michigan Hospital, on September 20, 2006 from 3-4 PM (EDT).

The minimally invasive hysterectomy will be performed with the assistance of the da Vinci Surgical System, by Dr. Arnold Advincula, Associate Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology and Director of Minimally Invasive Surgery, Division of OB/GYN at The University of Michigan Health System. Arleen H. Song, M.D., M.P.H., Assistant Professor, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, will moderate the event to explain critical portions of the surgery and answer e-mail questions from viewers during the Webcast.

For this innovative procedure, Dr. Advincula will use da Vinci (NASDAQ: ISRG), a breakthrough robotic system that provides surgeons with Intuitive® motion, high-resolution 3D vision and innovative EndoWrist® instrumentation. The da Vinci System is designed to scale, filter and seamlessly translate the surgeon's hand movements into more precise movements of the EndoWrist instruments, providing the surgeon with improved dexterity, increased precision and control. This can enhance the surgeon's ability to perform more gynecologic procedures using a minimally invasive approach.

Despite broad acceptance of laparoscopy, open incisions remain the most common approach to hysterectomy. This is due in part to the learning curve associated with conventional laparoscopy and its associated complications as well as the difficulty in treating advanced pathology, such as pelvic adhesions or endometriosis, via laparoscopy.

According to Dr. Advincula, "da Vinci provides a means to overcome both the challenges presented by advanced pathology and the surgical limitations of conventional laparoscopy. It does this by providing surgeons with improved precision and dexterity, coupled with advanced imaging, which allows for the completion of complex, minimally invasive procedures in a fashion analogous to open surgery."

The da Vinci System enables the GYN surgeon to tackle more complex pathology using a minimally invasive approach, thereby minimizing the need to perform hysterectomy via laparotomy (open incision). "I can operate with greater precision and control, which is especially valuable with more complex pathology, such as pelvic adhesions or endometriosis," Advincula said. "With da Vinci, I can discern the tissue planes more easily and perform more difficult dissections -- which enables me to offer minimally invasive surgery to more of my patients," he added.

According to Dr. Advincula, "Robotic surgery is more intuitive to learn and perform compared to traditional laparoscopy, which will allow more GYN surgeons to perform minimally invasive surgery for their patients." Moreover, he added, "After you've become comfortable with the system, operative times for the da Vinci cases are comparable to that of open procedures, and they are generally quicker than times reported in the literature for doing the procedure laparoscopically."

"While more complex cases take longer, I routinely perform a simple, benign hysterectomy in 60 to 90 minutes," said Advincula. "And with new robotic instruments being introduced specific to GYN applications, da Vinci hysterectomy and myomectomy [removal of uterine fibroids] procedures are becoming even easier and quicker to perform."

For many patients, da Vinci Surgery means significantly less pain and scarring, less blood loss, reduced risk of infection, shorter hospital stays, a much quicker recovery and faster return to normal daily activities compared to conventional open surgery. According to Dr. Advincula, his patients who received a da Vinci hysterectomy typically go home the day following the procedure, and return to their normal routines within one to two weeks.

The University of Michigan Health System is one of the nation's leading centers in minimally invasive gynecologic surgery. It offers one of the only training programs available in robot-assisted gynecologic surgery. With ongoing investment in technology and procedure development in minimally invasive gynecologic surgery, the University of Michigan is realizing its mission to raise surgical standards-of-care for women.

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