May 3, 2000 NYU Medical Center announces first minimally invasive robotic heart valve surgery in the United States
New York, NY, May 2, 2000 - NYU Medical Center cardiac surgeons, leaders in minimally invasive heart surgery techniques and Computer Motion, Inc., the leader in medical robotics, announced today the first minimally invasive robotic heart valve surgery in the United States was successfully completed. On Friday, April 28th, Stephen Colvin, M.D., Chief of Cardiothoracic Surgery and Eugene A. Grossi, M.D., Director of Cardiac Surgical Research at NYU Medical Center, used the Computer Motion ZEUS Robotic Surgical System to perform the minimally invasive mitral valve repair on a 50-year-old male as part of a United States Food and Drug Administration approved Phase I clinical study.
The robotics technology provides an operative field of view with 10 to 15 times magnification - a significant increase over the standard surgical loops, which only provide 3 to 4 times magnification. The robotics increases the safety of the procedure by allowing the surgeon to control the endoscope (a slender optical tube which is passed into the patient's body to see the operative site) and surgical instruments in real time from a workstation instead of standing throughout a long and complex procedure. The computer interface also has the ability to provide more exact needle placement, which is critical to the success of heart surgery.
Drs. Colvin and Grossi performed the minimally invasive procedure through a mini-thoracotomy (a 4-6 cm incision) in the patient's chest. As a result, the typical patient pain and trauma associated with a conventional approach to a valve repair was avoided. The morning after surgery, the patient reported little pain and was mobile and comfortable. The surgeons added, "The post-operative transesophageal echocardiogram (TEE) revealed that the mitral valve is no longer leaking, and the patient is scheduled to be discharged on Tuesday."
While seated at a workstation a few feet away from the patient, the surgeon controls three robotic arms on the operating table, which become his or her eyes and hands for the minimally invasive surgery. While viewing a video monitor to see the operative site, the surgeon manipulates conventional minimally invasive instrument handles at the workstation, as the robotics replicates these movements with the instrument tips at the operative site. The surgeon also has the ability to move the endoscope using simple voice commands to directly control the visualization during a procedure.
"NYU Medical Center is world-renowned in heart valve surgery, " said Robert W. Duggan, Chairman and CEO of Computer Motion. "We are very pleased to be working together with NYU to pioneer this new procedure and to lead the advancement of minimally invasive surgery."
Surgeons at NYU Medical Center will perform a total of 12 mitral valve surgeries as part of the Phase I trial.
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