First General Surgery Case Performed With Voice Controlled ViKY System in U.S.

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Summit Medical Group's Dr. Andrew Gumbs performed a gastrectomy with the voice-controlled ViKy System, the first such surgery in the U.S.

"ViKY® not only allows surgeons to precisely control the position of the scope, it also provides a stable image. With ViKY® the image is rock steady and we can perform procedures more efficiently with less surgeon fatigue." stated Dr. Gumbs.

Summit Medical Group's Dr. Andrew Gumbs put on a wireless headset similar to the ones used every day for cell phones, and spoke to ViKY® ("Vicky"), a motorized surgical assistant that was developed by EndoControl Medical in Grenoble, France.

ViKY® was designed to move and hold an endoscope, which functions as the surgeon’s eyes during minimally invasive surgical procedures. ViKY® smoothly and precisely moved the endoscope around the operative site as per Dr. Gumbs’ vocal commands. By holding and moving the endoscope exactly to where he wants it, ViKY® provides Dr. Gumbs with an extra hand during the operation enabling him to perform advanced minimally invasive surgical procedures such as a recent gastrectomy.

"ViKY® not only allows surgeons to precisely control the position of the scope, it also provides a stable image. Before ViKY® was developed surgeons had to hold and move the endoscope by hand. During advanced complex procedures this becomes very tiring and consequently image quality can suffer. This becomes very important as we are performing delicate maneuvers around critical structures. With ViKY® the image is rock steady and we can perform procedures more efficiently with less surgeon fatigue." stated Dr. Gumbs.

He also said: "The extra hand that ViKY® provides helps the entire surgical team to be more efficient and helps to improve patient outcomes. In the future, advanced minimally invasive surgery will evolve with technology and motorized assistants such as ViKY®. This will enable us to do more advanced procedures and continue to improve patient outcomes. We are already using ViKY® to help us perform advanced Single Port Access procedures".

ABOUT ANDREW A. GUMBS, MD

Andrew A. Gumbs, MD, is Director of the Minimally Invasive Hepatic-Pancreatic-Biliary Surgery Program at Summit Medical Group. In addition to his position with Summit Medical Group, he is Professor of Endoscopic Digestive Surgery at the University of Genoa in Italy. Dr. Gumbs has privileges at Overlook Hospital in Summit, New Jersey.

The son of a surgeon, Dr. Gumbs was inspired to focus on hepatic, pancreatic, and biliary surgery after his grandmother died of pancreatic cancer. He says, "Minimally invasive surgery is particularly gratifying to me because patients usually recover quickly and experience less pain compared with traditional, open surgical approaches." He adds, "Despite the often complex nature of minimally invasive surgery, it has the potential to be easiest on the patient. My reward as a surgeon is in doing what's in the best interest of my patients."

ABOUT SUMMIT MEDICAL GROUP

Providing exceptional primary and specialty care since 1929, Summit Medical Group has pioneered information technology advances with its electronic health records and electronic prescribing program. With more than 225 highly qualified healthcare providers, it serves as a unique model of healthcare in New Jersey. Through its nationally recognized award-winning customer service program, Summit Medical Group treats more than 55,000 patients per month at its Berkeley Heights campus and area satellites in Bayonne, Berkeley Heights, Millburn, Shorts Hills, Summit, Warren, and Westfield. NJBiz magazine named Summit Medical Group one of the Fifty Fastest Growing Companies in New Jersey. Summit Medical Group is a member of the American Medical Group Association.

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Maureen Bennett
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