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Fort Lauderdale

da Vinci single site cholecystectomy photo

Patient’s gallbladder is removed through a single one-inch incision through the belly button

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – Surgeon Alexander Parr, M.D., has performed the first da Vinci® Single-Site™ cholecystectomy at Holy Cross Hospital in Fort Lauderdale using robotic assistance to remove a patient’s gallbladder through a single 2.5 cm incision through the umbilicus.

Unlike traditional laparoscopy and robotic surgery that require three to five incisions, this new technology allows for a single incision of approximately 2.5 cm through the umbilicus.  The robotic instruments and endoscope are then placed in the incision and the gallbladder is removed. The first successful surgery took place on April 30.  

“There are many potential benefits to this technology,” said Dr. Parr.  “The da Vinci Single-Site platform is an innovative technology that improves visualization of biliary anatomy allowing patients to receive a virtually scar-less cholecystectomy.  Procedures typically take under an hour and patients can leave the hospital in less than 24 hours.”

During the procedure, Dr. Parr was seated at the surgeon console which allowed him to view a 3-D, high-definition image of the patient’s anatomy.  Dr. Parr used two master controllers to precisely manipulate his 5 mm instruments and endoscope.  The da Vinci System allows for precise dissection by filtering any tremors.

The Food and Drug Administration approved the da Vinci Single-Site System for Cholecystectomy in December 2011.  Holy Cross surgeons currently utilize the multiport da Vinci Si System in urology, gynecology, bariatric and general surgery.

More than 1 million people in the U.S. undergo cholecystectomy each year. Many of these patients are now candidates for a da Vinci Single-Site Cholecystectomy. According to the American College of Surgeons, surgery is the recommended treatment for gallbladder pain from gallstones and non-functioning gallbladders.

Catherine Hart, 39, of Lighthouse Point, is pleased with the results of her May 16 surgery. “There is no scar whatsoever,” said Hart, who acknowledges that vanity played a role in her decision to have the single site surgery. “I’m young, and I do spend a lot of time in a swimsuit. I have a boat.  We are in south Florida.”

The single site surgery appealed to Hart, a registered nurse, for another reason as well. “I feel like it was less invasive because I did not have multiple incision sites compared to a regular lap cholecystectomy. I could have a shower right away -- that was a good thing; and I was able to swim about a week later.”

Click here to learn more about Robotic Surgery at Holy Cross Hospital.   

A member of Catholic Health East, Holy Cross Hospital in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. is a full-service, non-profit Catholic hospital, sponsored by the Sisters of Mercy. Since opening its doors in 1955, the 559-bed hospital has offered progressive services and programs to meet the evolving healthcare needs of Broward County. Today, Holy Cross has more than 600 physicians on staff representing more than 40 specialties and more than 3,000 employees. The hospital is fully accredited by the independent Joint Commission and its medical team has earned a reputation for excellence unsurpassed in the community. To learn more about Holy Cross, visit www.holy-cross.com, “like” Holy Cross Hospital, Fort Lauderdale on Facebook or follow @holycrossfl on Twitter.