Robotic prolapse surgery

The use of the da Vinci robot to assist prolapse surgery has grown rapidly in recent years. The da Vinci robot is now extensively used in the United States to assist surgeons when performing operations for prolapse. The two commonly performed prolapse operations using the da Vinci robot are the sacral colpopexy and sacral hysteropexy procedures. Approximately 40% of sacral colpopexy operations for prolapse in the US are performed with the assistance of the da Vinci robot (about 25,000 cases a year).

Dr Carey uses the da Vinci robot for women who have advanced prolapse and wish to conserve their uterus. Dr Carey also uses the robot for women with prolapse who have already had a hysterectomy (usually referred to as vaginal vault prolapse).

Advantages of robot assisted surgery

When performing robot assisted surgery the surgeon remains in complete control of the robotic instruments. Robot assisted surgery has important advantages for the surgeon and the patient over traditional laparoscopic and open abdominal surgery. Robot assisted surgery provides the surgeon with superior vision and surgical precision. The robot provides the surgeon 10 times magnified and three-dimensional vision (traditional laparoscopy provides only two-dimensional vision and 6 times magnification). The delicate articulating surgical instruments used in robot-assisted surgery allow for more precise surgical dissection and more dextrous surgical manoeuvres when compared to traditional laparoscopic surgery.

Dr Carey will be happy to answer any questions you may have and can give more specific advice. Before deciding to have surgery, you should read carefully all the information about your operation and consider obtaining a second opinion.

If you experience complications after you leave hospital, contact Dr Carey or the nursing staff on 1 West at the Epworth Freemasons Hospital for advice. In an emergency you may attend the Royal Women’s Hospital, Parkville or Epworth Hospital, Richmond emergency department or attend your closest hospital emergency department.