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First pulmonary lobectomy lung surgery performed with robotic assistance

The first pulmonary lobectomy lung surgery using the da Vinci® (robotic) Surgical System was performed at Baptist Health Louisville by Robert Linker, MD.

A pulmonary lobectomy is one of the most common treatments for lung cancer, removing the lobe of the lung for patients with early stage, non-small cell lung cancer.

The traditional procedure requires a large, eight- to 10-inch incision, which can result in substantial blood loss and a lengthy and uncomfortable recovery. Utilizing the da Vinci Surgical System enables surgeons to operate through a few small incisions, without spreading the ribs.

A patient who underwent the da Vinci lobectomy said he highly recommends the procedure.

“Recovery has gone well. There has been very little pain, and I noticed an improvement in my breathing right away,” said the man, who returned home after just four days in the hospital and returned almost immediately to his usual activities.

His short hospital stay, quick recovery and improved breathing is typical for this procedure, along with less blood loss, minimized pain and scarring.

Studies also suggest lower cancer recurrence in patients with advanced disease due to better removal of lymph nodes with this procedure.

Dr. Linker is a physician with Thoracic Surgical Specialists, part of Baptist Surgical Associates, and can be reached at (502) 895-2295.