Robotic surgeries gaining acceptance among patients, surgeons in India

Robotic assisted surgeries (RAS) seem to be gaining some acceptance among surgeons and patients in India.

RAS helps doctors perform complex surgeries with ease, reduces the size of surgical incisions, minimises blood loss, cuts pain and shortens patient’s post-procedure recovery time, claim surgical robotic systems manufacturers and surgeons who conduct operations on these machines.

In addition, RAS facilitates better visualisation (of the body part under surgery), enhances dexterity and greater precision and thereby delivers better clinical outcomes especially for patients who are undergoing procedures for oncology, thyroid, liver, gynaecologic cancers (cervical, uterine, ovarian, vaginal and vulvar) and urology, according to medical professionals.

Preetha Reddy, Executive Vice-Chairperson, Apollo Hospitals, said, “The advent of cutting-edge technologies always pushes the boundaries of medicine and a remarkable innovation of this era has certainly been RAS.”'

“With RAS, surgeries are possible with fewer blood transfusions, reduced risk of wound infection and shorter stay in the hospital,”' she added.

Responding to the growing awareness about robotic-assisted surgeries, many tech-savvy surgeons in the country are now in the process of learning and adopting this technology.

Intuitive Surgical, designer and manufacturer of Da Vinci robotic surgical systems, has recently entered into a collaboration with AIIMS Delhi to launch a robotic onboarding training (ROPE) to equip young surgeons to move the robotic way.

S.V.S. Deo, Professor and Head, Department of Surgical Oncology, AIIMS, said, “This will enable young surgeons and trainees to gain exposure to cutting-edge technologies of the future. We ran a pilot programme of ROPE in the oncology division of AIIMS and now based on surgical students’ feedback we are planning to expand it to other specialities and institutions.''

RAS companies such as Intuitive Surgical and Medtronic have been receiving positive feedback from surgeons regarding the usage of robotic technology. Intuitive Surgical, which has 73 RAS installations in various hospitals in India, reported a 25% to 30% year-on-year growth in deployments.

“We are now aiming to scale our RAS introductory programme in the country in partnership with several medical institutions,” said Mandeep Singh Kumar, VP and GM, Intuitive India.

Madan Krishnan, Vice-President & Managing Director, Medtronic India, that makes robotic guidance platforms, said, “RAS is an extension of the doctor. It helps surgeons visualise the surgery in advance and map the progress in real-time. This helps them align their surgical plans accurately while doing spinal or cranial procedures.”

Seeing the growing scope of robotics in surgeries, IRDAI had already issued guidelines to insurance firms to include RAS in their health coverage plans. As of now, the cost of robotic surgeries will remain equivalent to that of traditional surgeries, say healthcare providers.

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Printable version | Jun 15, 2021 2:54:59 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/robotic-surgeries-gaining-acceptance-among-patients-surgeons-in-india/article34564508.ece

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