Alexis Dominguez MD is a staff OB/GYN working in a private practice in Miami, Florida. He is trained in Minimally Invasive Surgery and the da Vinci Robotic System, a surgical robotics technology.
He must often perform hysterectomies on some of his patients, which he defines as the removal of the uterus. There are many reasons why some women must undergo a hysterectomy, he says, including pelvic support problems, abnormal uterine bleeding, and cancer. "More common causes are fibroids, which are benign growth or tumors of the muscles of the uterus," Alexis Dominguez MD explains. "That's one of the most common causes for hysterectomies. Essentially it's just removal of the uterus, with leaving the ovaries, depending on the patient's age."
There are several types of hysterectomies, ranging from partial to total. The procedure is commonly performed with the da Vinci Robotic System. "We enter the abdomen with a trocar, which is essentially a sheath, which allows us to place the instruments, via the trocars," Alexis Dominguez MD says. "We use one trocar in the umbilical site, and then some accessory points about the area. It helps us triangulate a visual field, so that we're able to see everything in 3-D. We have a better visualization of the procedure; of the actual anatomy around the area. A better visualization of the pelvis, and the structures that are within the pelvis.
Alexis Dominguez MD says that the total recovery time for a hysterectomy performed robotically is usually between four and six weeks. Immediately after the surgery patients remain hospitalized between 24 to 48 hours, on average, depending on how the procedure went, and how the patient responds during the postoperative period.