Dr. Kristi Keil, Urogynecologist at Rose Medical Center | by Debra Melani

Dr. Kristi Keil

Posted on Thu, Jan 31, 2013

Performs Sacrocolpopexy surgery using da Vinci® Robotic System

Sacrocolpopexy: Used for vaginal vault prolapse (when the upper portion of the vagina drops or sags), the procedure involves attaching a mesh-like sling (not part of the FDA recall) to a ligament on the front of the sacrum to anchor the top of the vagina.

Of note: Dr. Keil became the first surgeon in the Denver area to perform sacrocolpopexy in 2006.

Benefits: Done with traditional laparoscopic surgery, it is technically difficult and requires a skilled assistant, as it involves a lot of intricate sewing. With the maneuverability of the da Vinci system’s controllers, which act like extensions of a surgeon’s own wrists, and the 10-times magnified views, doctors can perform the tasks with greater precision and ease. Patients have less scarring and pain medication and quicker return to work and activities.

da Vinci® Robotic Systemwoman on bike

Since 2002, when HealthONE hospitals became the first in the Rocky Mountain Region to introduce the da Vinci® Robotic System into the operating room, thousands of patients have benefited from the most-advanced laparoscopic surgery available today. Although the four-armed surgical robot never fulfilled its original intent — providing remote battlefield surgery for the Army in the late 1980s — it has done everything from removing cancerous prostates and kidneys to repairing heart valves and prolapsed uteruses, all while putting patients back on their feet more quickly than traditional surgeries. HealthONE continues to lead the Denver area into the robotic era, with the recent debut in bariatric, as well as colorectal, surgeries.

Although surgeons are still in control with da Vinci®, they sit at a console a few feet away from the patient, peering through a high-definition, 3-D, viewing system. Looking more like a teen playing a video game than a doctor performing surgery, the surgeon uses hand controls to manipulate the robotic arms, which are inserted strategically in the patient through small (less than half inch) incisions and mimic the surgeon’s motions, but on a much more minute scale. Superb range-of-motion, coupled with a magnified vision system that surgeons say gives the illusion of being inside the patient, can lead to excellent outcomes with less risk of blood loss, infections, scarring and other serious complications.

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