Surgical Associates of Grinnell changed the name of its educational institute to add robotics and become The Grinnell Institute for Robotic and Minimally Invasive Surgery. This reflects the new knowledge base that Surgical Associates surgeons are creating and sharing with other surgeons in the state and country. Surgeons in the Institute include David Coster, MD; Nicholas Kuiper, DO; Mathew Severidt, DO; and Aaron Smith, DO.
Over the past decade, robotic assisted surgery has revolutionized the delivery of urologic and gynecologic surgical care. Now, advancements with this technology allow general surgeons to perform an even wider array of complex abdominal procedures with unprecedented precision.
“Our team, known for its creativity and innovation in minimally invasive surgery for nearly 25 years, has over the past four years been quietly expanding that creative expertise into the field of robotic surgery, assuring once again that patients will notice a positive difference by having a Grinnell surgeon,” says Mathew Severidt, DO, general surgeon with Surgical Associates.
The institute will have one article published in a peer-reviewed professional journal, the Archives of Medical and Biomedical Research. It also welcomes surgeons from across the state to observe robotically assisted surgeries. The most significant benefit of the institute for patients is its ability to accept and perform complex surgical cases.
Surgeons with Surgical Associates were the first in the state of Iowa to perform a robotic-assisted Whipple procedure for pancreatic cancer and a robotic-assisted abdominoperineal resection for rectal cancer. Both are considered very advanced and complex surgeries.
Marilyn Fenner, 78, of Grinnell, underwent a robotically assisted rectal cancer resection. The surgeons agree that the procedure time for robotic and open surgery in the rectum area is about the same; however, there is a significant benefit with the robotics with accessing the tissue. Robotic surgeries really work well in the pelvic area.
After an open procedure, a patient typically spends five to seven days in the hospital and requires a high level a pain control medications. After the robotic surgery, Fenner spent three days at Grinnell Regional Medical Center and was back to normal activities after 10 days.
“I’d never had surgery so everything was new and scary. I thought everything went great. I didn’t have much pain,” Fenner says. “No one wants to have surgery but if this had to be, this was a better experience than I would have ever thought. I’m very lucky to have the surgeons and hospital here in Grinnell. I know some people think they need to go to Des Moines for care but I think they need to see what we can do at GRMC.”
Surgical Associates surgeons are especially well-known for improvements in upper abdominal surgery, including operations on the esophagus, stomach, spleen liver, pancreas, liver, gall bladder and bile ducts. Indications for such operations include gastroesophageal reflux disease and hiatal hernia, morbid obesity, cancer of the esophagus, stomach, and pancreas, diseases of the spleen, gallstones and diseases of the gall bladder and bile ducts, liver tumors, diaphragm hernias, and many others. General surgeons also attend to surgical diseases of the lungs, intestine, appendix, colon, rectum, and pelvic organs.
“We believe patients respond better and heal faster with robotically assisted surgeries. This technology has truly advanced the care of surgical patients,” Severidt says. “At Surgical Associates, we always talk with the patient and together determine the best way to care for their situation. I believe in many cases the robotic surgical system provides real tangible benefits to the patient. Better outcomes drive the advancements in technology.”
For more information on The Grinnell Institute for Robotic and Minimally Invasive Surgery, call Surgical Associates at 641-236-4323.