The video below shows the USC Cardiothoracic Surgeons utilizing the da Vinci Surgical System to divide connective tissue that is holding a piece of a lung down to the chest wall. The lung is located to the left and the yellow tissue is the connective tissue. The robotic arms are the black, pencil-like arms that are moving. The arm to the right is utilizing a cautering device that is cutting through the yellow tissue using electrical current.
Pulmonary Adhesion Time: 24 seconds
In some conditions of the lung, the surgeon needs to look inside the chest to determine what the condition is, get a piece of the abnormal tissue (biopsy) or sample lymph nodes, to see if a cancer has spread. Traditional surgery has utilized an incision or cut between the patients ribs, then spreading the patient's ribs so that the surgeon can get a direct view of the inside of the patient's chest. By using the da Vinci Surgical System, the surgeon can use a small camera attached to the robot which is totally controlled by the surgeon. The surgeon can direct the camera inside, allowing him to see anywhere in the chest, as well as magnify what he is seeing if needed. The robot arms are introduced through small incisions or ports. Through these ports, the surgeon controls the robot arms and attachments to perform the surgery without making large incisions.
The benefit of using the robot and video assisted surgery is that the chest can be explored without large incisions and if an abnormal mass is found it can often be removed with the robot. At all times the surgeon is in complete control of the robot and the full surgical team is at the patient's side should there be problems or if the surgeon decides that traditional surgery is the best approach.