Virtually scarless ‘SPIDER’ surgery successfully performed at Loma Linda University Medical Center

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Dr. Marcos Michelotti performed gallbladder surgery at Loma Linda University Medical Center using the SPIDER Surgical System.

Dr. Marcos Michelotti (left), a Loma Linda University Medical Center surgeon who specializes in minimally invasive and robotic surgeries, and his surgical team performed surgery on a patient recently

A unique surgery using a new device that leaves virtually no scars on a patient was recently performed at Loma Linda University Medical Center, a first in the Inland Empire.

Dr. Marcos Michelotti performed gallbladder surgery using the SPIDER Surgical System on a patient who had been suffering from gallstones. The patient did not want to have scars on the abdomen that would have resulted from a traditional surgery.

The SPIDER system, from TransEnterix, allowed Dr. Michelotti to perform the surgery with a single incision, mainly within the patient’s belly button. Previously, up to four incisions would have been required.

“The procedure involves the use of a new scarless surgery technology that enables the surgeon to perform a wide array of general surgery procedures through a small umbilical incision,” Dr. Michelotti said. “I believe that the use of the ‘SPIDER’ device will make scarless surgery available to more patients with multiple surgical needs with the added benefits of less pain and better cosmetic results.”

He said the device allows the surgeon to perform surgery without the access difficulties posed by single-site incision

The SPIDER system allows the surgeon to access the patient’s abdomen through the belly button and expand, once inside, allowing clear view of the surgical site and operate at necessary angles. The device may be used for different types of surgeries, from hernia to bariatric surgeries.

The device, because of its flexibility and articulating instruments, also allows the surgeon to perform the surgery through “intra-abdominal triangulation,” with the right hand controlling the right instrument, and the left hand controlling the left instrument. Previous surgeries required “inverted instrumentation,” with the surgeon’s right hand controlling the left instrument, and the left hand controlling the right instrument, due to challenges posed by performing surgery from a single site.

Photo caption: Dr. Marcos Michelotti (left), a Loma Linda University Medical Center surgeon who specializes in minimally invasive and robotic surgeries, and his surgical team performed surgery on a patient recently using the new SPIDER Surgical System.

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About Loma Linda University Medical Center (LLUMC)
Loma Linda University Medical Center’s comprehensive health system includes: Loma Linda University Medical Center, Loma Linda University Children’s Hospital, Loma Linda University Medical Center East Campus, Loma Linda University Behavioral Medicine Center, Loma Linda University Heart & Surgical Hospital, Loma Linda University Medical Center - Murrieta, and physician clinics. LLUMC is widely respected as a health care leader and is known for its pioneering and cutting-edge work in such areas as organ transplants, proton treatment for cancers, cardiac care, physical rehabilitation, acute pediatric and adult care, as well as treatments for chemical dependence and other behavioral disorders. LLUMC is the only Level 1 trauma Center in the San Bernardino, Riverside, Inyo, and Mono counties, which covers over 40,000 square miles in Southern California. With a total of 1,076 beds, the Loma Linda University Health System includes the only children’s hospital in the region. Loma Linda University Medical Center sees over 30,000 inpatients and more than 500,000 outpatient visits a year.

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Herbert Atienza
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