Houston Methodist. Leading Medicine.
Houston Methodist. Leading Medicine

Methodist Obstetrics and Gynecology Associates

Robotic–Assisted Hysterectomy Helps Patients Heal Faster

Latricia Thompson, M.D. and Julia Romero, M.D. now offer Patients this less invasive alternative to traditional surgery for many common female conditions

When hysterectomy (surgery to remove the uterus) is recommended as a treatment for gynecologic cancers, fibroids, endometriosis or other uterine conditions, women have more options than they did a few years ago. Traditional surgery, vaginal hysterectomy, laparoscopic–assisted vaginal hysterectomy and robotic–assisted hysterectomy are among the choices.

Methodist Obstetrical and Gynecological Associates at Willowbrook offer robotic surgery as an alternative to the traditional surgical approach. Latricia Thompson, M.D. and Julia Romero, M.D. perform robotic surgery using the da Vinci® Surgical System, an FDA–approved robotic–assisted surgical system. Methodist Willowbrook Hospital is the only hospital in Northwest Houston to offer this minimally invasive state–of–the–art procedure.

Robotic surgery offers a choice with benefits including less pain, less blood loss, minimal scarring and a shorter hospital stay. Dr. Romero and Dr. Thompson, obstetricians and gynecologists on staff at Methodist Willowbrook Hospital both agree, "The bottom line is you can return to your normal activities and busy life sooner."

Performing Detailed Surgeries

Robotic surgeries are performed for patients who are most likely to benefit from smaller incisions, precise surgical techniques and quicker recovery.

"We customize treatment to address the needs and best interests of each patient," Dr. Romero says. "There are benefits to a robotic approach, just as there are benefits to a laparoscopic and vaginal approach."

The surgery is performed entirely by your doctor; the robot cannot act on its own. The robotic technology allows the doctor to perform complex procedures through just a few tiny openings. The da Vinci Surgical System allows the surgeon to operate from a console while viewing a three–dimensional image of the surgical field. The system seamlessly translates the surgeon´s hands, wrist and finger movements into precise, real–time movements of surgical instruments inside the patient.

A few years ago, a patient who needed a hysterectomy faced an open surgical procedure that required a large incision. "Abdominal hysterectomies typically need at least a two–day hospital stay and about four to six weeks of recovery," Dr. Thompson explains. "Robotic surgery can cut recovery time in half – as little as two weeks – and patients typically go home the next day."

A Cosmetic Approach

While incisions for open surgery hysterectomies range from 6 to 12 inches, robotic surgery requires four tiny incisions (each less than one centimeter) – a 10–millimeter incision near the belly button, and then three smaller incisions on the side of the abdomen.

For more information or to schedule an appointment with Methodist Obstetrical and Gynecological Associates, call 281-890-4448.