In 2021, Businessman Edmilson Dalla Vecchia Ribas, 61, was the first patient with type 2 diabetes to undergo robotic metabolic surgery worldwide. The intervention was carried out in July at the Marcelino Champagnat Hospital affiliated with the Pontifical Catholic University of Paraná (PUCPR) in Curitiba.
“I have already left the hospital without taking insulin,” Ribas told Agência Brasil on Monday
“That was a great win. The recovery was speedy. I have a normal daily life: driving a car, working, and losing weight. It was a very successful operation. “
On this Monday, he sees himself as healed.
“It is a victory for medicine and Dr. Alcides. He’s a good guy at what he does. “
Ribas referred to the digestive tract surgeon Alcides Branco, who is responsible for metabolic surgery and a pioneer in robotics.
In an interview with Agência Brasil, the doctor said that using the robot brings more safety and results for patients. In the past, an incision was made in the patient’s abdomen, followed by video laparoscopy – a minimally invasive surgical technique in which small incisions are made in the abdomen – and now the operation with the help of robots. “That brought quality in terms of the postoperative phase, and the patients had a very positive result,” commented the doctor.
Metabolic surgery is gastrointestinal surgery – using bariatric techniques – to treat type 2 diabetes.
Three more patients are already registered for an operation with the help of the robot. According to the doctor, the disease has broad clinical treatment, but a small percentage of patients do not respond to medication use.
“The robot is a new tool that contributes to the surgical treatment of diabetes and brings more surgical quality, safety, results, and better performance. It’s part of evolution. “
However, Alcides Branco noted that not all patients with type 2 diabetes can undergo metabolic surgery. It is only indicated in cases where the patient does not show any improvement from clinical treatment or insulin. The endocrinologist or family doctor carries out this screening.
Criteria for surgery include: a person diagnosed with diabetes less than ten years ago, under 70 years old, taking two or three pills a day, using insulin, having Grade 1 obesity, i.e. body mass (BMI) under 35. If the patient is obese, bariatric surgery is recommended.
According to Branco, the goal of diabetes surgery is to stimulate the pancreas to produce insulin.
According to data from the International Diabetes Federation (IDF), there are around 17 million adults in Brazil living with diabetes in 2019, and nine out of ten cases are type 2 diabetes.
In robotic surgery, the surgeon controls a robot with four mechanical arms equipped with various medical instruments via a control panel in the operating room. The device has cameras that deliver up to 20 times enlarged 3D images with up to 360 ° articulated arms, which allows greater freedom and movement control.
The main advantages include using the robot, which ensures greater precision of movements, a less invasive operation with a reduction in operating time, and a faster recovery of the patient than with conventional methods using video laparoscopy.
The recently operated businessman Edmilson Ribas recommends intervention with the help of a robot for those who have diabetes 2 and who could not get better despite medication and insulin.
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