The surgical robot is called "da Vinci" in part because Leonardo da Vinci invented the first robot. He also used unparalleled anatomical accuracy and three-dimensional details to bring his masterpieces to life.
With the da Vinci Surgical System, surgeons operate through just a few small incisions. The da Vinci System features a magnified 3D high-definition vision system and tiny wristed instruments that bend and rotate far greater than the human wrist. As a result, da Vinci enables your surgeon to operate with enhanced vision, precision, dexterity and control.
The da Vinci System also consists of a surgeon’s console that is typically in the same room as the patient, and a patient-side cart with four interactive robotic arms controlled from the console. Three of the arms are for tools that hold objects, and can also act as scalpels, scissors, bovies, or unipolar or bipolar electrocautery instruments.
The fourth arm carries an endoscopic camera with two lenses that gives the surgeon full stereoscopic vision from the console. The surgeon sits at the console and looks through two eye holes at a 3D image of the procedure, while maneuvering the arms with two foot pedals and two hand controllers. The da Vinci System scales, filters and translates the surgeon's hand movements into more precise micro-movements of the instruments, which operate through small incisions in the body.
Complex procedures like cardiac surgery require an excellent view of the operative field and the ability to maneuver instruments within tight spaces with precision and control. Surgeons historically have used invasive approaches like "open sternotomy" for heart surgery, which means splitting the breastbone and pulling back the ribs and typically results in a foot-long incision. This provides visibility and allows room for the surgeon to get his or her hands and instruments very close to the operative site, but results in significant pain, blood loss and a long recovery for patients. More recently, smaller incisions have been used to perform a variety of cardiac procedures. However, many cardiac surgeons feel the reduced access may limit visualization and may impede access to the operative field.
Physicians have used the da Vinci System successfully worldwide in approximately 1.5 million various surgical procedures to date. da Vinci is changing the experience of surgery for people around the world.