• Robotic Surgery – New, Advanced Treatment for Colon Cancer, Crohn’s Disease, Colitis and More

    Bassett Medical Center

    February 26, 2018

    Dr-Raul-Monzon-Dr-Luis-Oce.jpgCooperstown, N.Y. – Millions of people in this country suffer from inflammatory bowel disease such as Crohn’s or colitis, both of which may increase a person’s risk of colon cancer. Bassett Healthcare Network colorectal surgeons are now performing one of the most advanced treatments for these conditions – robotic-assisted, minimally invasive surgery –  at Bassett Medical Center in Cooperstown.

    At right  (l. to r.): Dr. Jose Raul Monzon and Dr. Luis Oceguera

    “Robotic surgery to treat colon cancer is a relatively new advancement and allows us to remove difficult to reach tumors,” explains Luis Oceguera, MD, who is the surgeon responsible for launching the colorectal robotic surgery program at Bassett.  “We are also using this form of minimally invasive surgery to treat patients for a number of common colorectal conditions when medications and lifestyle changes no longer work.”

    Bassett recently acquired the latest generation of a sophisticated robotic surgical tool known as the da Vinci® Surgical System; it has much greater functionality than the previous system.

    Among the conditions robotic surgery can be used to treat are:

    • Inflammatory Bowel Disease (Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis)
    • Diverticulitis
    • Colon polyps
    • Rectal prolapse

    Both Oceguera and Jose Raul Monzon, MD, have extensive training in robotic-assisted surgery. The two surgeons work as a team and may use robotic surgery only or a hybrid approach of traditional laparoscopy and the da Vinci® Surgical System.

    “It depends on what will most benefit the patient and provide the best possible outcome,” says Oceguera, who also notes that the advantages to patients of these forms of minimally invasive surgery include less post-surgery pain and recovery time, less blood loss, fewer and smaller incisions and better outcomes.

    Monzon notes that, “One of the biggest advantages to using the robot is that it allows the entire operation to be done inside the abdomen and is of particular benefit for complex procedures requiring small, detailed work. The system provides us with a 3D high definition view inside the body, and it has tiny wristed instruments that bend and rotate far greater than is possible with the human hand. This gives us enhanced vision, precision and control. it really puts us at the forefront in terms of surgical capabilities in New York State,” observes Monzon.”