Robotics Bring Future Of Medicine To Samaritan

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It's part video game, part sci-fi movie.

And it's the future in surgery for doctors at Samaritan Medical Center in Watertown.

"I think this is the most important advancement in medicine that has happened in the last, probably, century, at least in surgery," said Dr. Alejandro Rodriguez, chief of urology and robotics at Samaritan.

It's called DaVinci and it's a $2 million machine designed to help make certain kinds of surgeries easier for both doctors and patients.

"It's economically better for the surgeon," Rodriguez said, "and it is better for the patient, because any type of surgery will actually have better precision dissecting and less blood loss."

The doctor looks through a 3D monitor and conducts the surgery with hand and foot controls.

"We are doing the surgery," Rodriguez said.

"The robot is not doing the surgery. It has no mind of its own. It's our mind, it's our arms that are actually doing the surgery."

Spokesperson Krista Kittle said the hospital plans to expand the program, which right now includes urology and gynecology, "but in the future will include thoracic surgery, general surgery, and ear, nose and throat."

Wednesday, October 22, 2014
, Watertown, NY

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