Superdoctors. Part 1, Robot surgeons.
- Winston, Robert M. L.
About this work
The first in a 3-part series in which Robert Winston meets doctors working at the cutting edge of medicine in new and innovative ways. This part looks at the increasing use of robots in medicine and surgery. He meets the robot version of Professor Darzi as he visits a patient on the hospital ward and he tries out robotic surgical tools. Fraser is a 1-year-old boy with renal disease and abdominal problems who undergoes robot surgery using the da Vinci robot which Winston himself finds both unnatural and stressful. The surgery is shown in detail - it takes longer than traditional surgery and the size of the tools are quite cumbersome when used robotically. Winston travels to Canada to meet Robert Carmichael who needs urgent surgery on his brain to remove a tumour. Surgeon Garnette Sutherland will operate on Robert using the Neuro-arm, a £12 000 000 surgical robot, the most technologically advanced robot of its kind in the world. It has only been used 4 times before; the surgery is shown in detail. The programme catches up with both patients a few months after their surgery - both operations were successful but Winston is not convinced the robots were essential although he appreciates that new interventions are necessary in order to advance medicine.