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AIIMS Acquires Four-Armed Robot to Assist in Surgeries

The country's premier All India Institute of Medical Sciences' (AIIMS) has acquired a four-armed robot, the first of its kind in Asia, to help in delicate surgeries// at the department of urology, top doctors said Friday.

"We acquired the Da Vinci Surgical Robot on July 19 and have so far conducted six prostate surgeries with the help of the machine. The robot is the first of its kind in Asia," said N.P. Gupta, professor and head of urology AIIMS.

The machine was imported from the US for Rs.90 million. But AIIMS has so far not charged a user fee from the patients.

"The new robot is a master slave system in which the surgeon, sitting in the console, and his controlled movements are transmitted through the robotic arms to perform the surgical procedure accurately."

"We have also availed five years of free service and maintenance from the company," Gupta told reporters ahead of a two-day conference from Monday.

Speaking of the advantages of new machine, Ashok K. Hemal, professor urology, said the robot increases the comfort level of the doctors and "further minimises the chance of technical and human error".

"It can perform with better accuracy cancer surgeries and of blockages in the kidney and other surgeries without much difficulty. So far, we have carried out six operations with 100 percent success," Hemal, a leading urologist in India and abroad, told IANS later.

"We performed the sixth operation today. It was done in just one hour and 25 minutes. All of our earlier five patients have already been discharged from the hospital after their successful surgeries," he said.

Robotic-assisted laparoscopic surgery provides the advantage of a three-dimensional view, magnification of the surgery site, seven-degree freedom of movement and ergonomic environment for performing surgery. The robotic radical prostatectomy operation will help minimise complications following the operati on, with patients having shorter hospital stay and a better quality of life, he said.

AIIMS is organising a two-day international live operative workshop from July 31 to teach the urology fraternity of the country about robotic urology surgery.

The hospital has invited Mani Menon from Henry Ford Hospital, Detroit, US to conduct a live operative workshop along with Gupta and Hemal.

Menon is considered a pioneer in robotic urologic surgery in the world and his technique is practised in most of the robotic centres all over the world, Hemal said.

(Source: IANS)
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