The da Vinci Surgical System promises greater precision, less scarring and shorter hospital stay than tradition prostate surgery. Using the new system, instead of making a six to eight inch incision, the removal of the prostate can be done by making just five small incisions of about half an inch long, leading to less pain and faster recovery. This new system provides the surgeon with magnified 3D vision and miniature articulating robotic wristed instrumentation.
The magnified 3D vision is produced by a ‘viewfinder’ which has a special, dual-lens endoscope. It can provide a magnified view, up to 12 times more closely than human vision allows, of the surgical site inside the patient. This is very desirable as it enables surgeons to see small vessels and work more precisely. Besides magnified 3D vision, surgeons are equipped with a robotic computer. The surgeon’s wrists and hands are connected to glove-like sensors and movements are scaled to guide the tools on the robot’s arm, known as EndoWrist®. The flexibility (it can turn 540 degrees) and the motion scaling mechanism of this patented robotic wrist allow greater freedom of movement and finer, more precise movements than standard instruments. For example, if the surgeon’s hand moves five centimeters, he can scale the robotic hands to move only one centimeter. This is particularly important as the nerves associated control the sexual function. On top of the flexibility, this robotic technology provides steadiness by filtering minute tremors of the human hand.