Permian High students learn about robotic surgery - KWES NewsWest 9 / Midland, Odessa, Big Spring, TX: newswest9.com |

Permian High students learn about robotic surgery

Da Vinci Robot (Source: KWES) Da Vinci Robot (Source: KWES)
ODESSA, TX (KWES) -

When you hear Da Vinci, the first thing that may come to mind is art, or even the movie, but doctors know "Da Vinci" as an innovative technology that has made surgery easier.

On Tuesday, Permian High School students got the chance to get their hands on the robotic machine.

"Da vinci XI" is named after Leonardo Da Vinci, who created what we know as the first humanoid robot. The machine is much more advanced though and it makes almost any surgery simpler.

Jamie Knotts, the Area Sales Manager for Intuitive Surgical, sells these machines to hospitals all over Texas.

He said, "The Da Vinci XI is the fourth generation robot and it gives the surgeon better access to more anatomy."  

Da Vinci surgery is minimally invasive allowing doctors to make small incisions using robotic arms with tiny claws on the end. On Tuesday, Permian High School students got to test it out themselves and get a true hands-on experience. 

Brianna Lewallen, a Senior student at Permian High said, "It's kind of cool because like there's things we just can't do with our two hands."

The Da Vinci robot gives doctors 3D high-definition vision and the "wristed instruments" acts as a surgeons hands, but can bend and rotate a lot easier than a human wrist can.  

"You're able to use the robot and the instruments to be very precise in dissecting and removing tissues within the abdomen," said Knotts.   

Through the incisions in the abdomen, doctors can perform surgery in almost any part of the body, including procedures involving urology, gynecology, general surgery, colon/rectal surgery and thoracic surgery. 

"It's used to do simple procedures such as gallbladder surgery and up to very complex procedures like lumpectomy and things of that nature in the chest," said Knotts.  

The technology has been around for 20 years but it's new for many students at Permian High who didn't know about the Da Vinci until now. 

"We don't get to see these things everyday. So, with them bringing it here, we are seeing new things, trying new things and finding new opportunities," said one student.
   
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