How does da Vinci robotic surgery work?

With the da Vinci robot-assisted surgery, the surgeon is able to see the surgical site as a high definition, 3D image. This enables the surgeon to see everything as though he or show is actually inside the body. It makes it easier to look at different organs and perceive depth.

Trinity Health is a Catholic health care organization that acts in accordance with the Catholic tradition and does not condone or support all practices covered in this site.  In case of emergency call 911. This site is educational and not a substitute for professional medical advice, always seek the advice of a qualified healthcare provider.
Scott A. Kamelle, MD
Gynecologic Oncology

Robotic surgery is an advanced form of laparoscopy. That is to say that it requires a camera for visualization that is placed inside the patient through a small hole in the skin called a port. In laparoscopy, a surgeon will place additional ports to pass instruments through that are required to perform the surgery. Robotic surgery is based upon the same principles. The difference however, is that the instruments and camera that are placed in the patient during the surgery are in fact connected to robotic "arms" and controlled by the surgeon at a physically separate console. So, once the robot is "hooked" up, the surgeon goes and sits at the console and manipulates the robotic arms and camera until the surgery is finished. The advantages of robotic surgery are many and include enhanced three dimensional visualization, improved dexterity and fine motor movements, as well as excellent ergonomics.

Working with a supporting surgical team, the surgeon operates wrist-attached master controls while seated at the da vinci robotic system console. The surgeon’s hand, wrist, and finger movements are seamlessly translated, with extraordinary control and range of motion, to very small surgical instruments positioned inside the patient. These instruments are manipulated by interactive robotic arms that precisely execute the surgeon’s movements and commands.

During this time, the specialized camera on one of the robotic arms and the robotic system’s 3-D visualization provide a view of the surgical field that is brighter, sharper and more magnified than images available through the human eye.

Continue Learning about Non-Diagnostic Surgical Procedures

How else may nerve block injections be used for chronic pain?
Donna Hill Howes, RNDonna Hill Howes, RN
If pain continues despite other treatments, pain medications may be injected into the space around t...
More Answers
What is cerebrospinal fluid diversion?
Honor Society of Nursing (STTI)Honor Society of Nursing (STTI)
Cerebrospinal fluid diversion is a process used to drain fluid that has built up around the brain an...
More Answers
What part of the body does a doctor take a skin graft from?
Dr. Daniel R. Spogen, MDDr. Daniel R. Spogen, MD
Doctors usually take skin for grafting from a part of the body that is hidden by clothing such as th...
More Answers
What are the risks of donating peripheral blood stem cells (PBSC)?
Piedmont Heart InstitutePiedmont Heart Institute
Unlike bone marrow donation, PBSC donation does not require anesthesia. The medication that is given...
More Answers

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.