This Robot Gives UK Man Second Chance at Life After Removing his Cancerous Tumor

Robots have been deployed in the medical field for a long time now. But this time, a robot just gave a man a second shot at life.

A surgical team from Gloucestershire Royal Hospital (GRH) removed a cancerous tumor from a grandfather’s esophagus with the help of a robot. This procedure ultimately saved the man’s life, reported first by Gloucestershire Live.

This also marks the first time in the UK that surgeons were able to conduct a successful operation by employing a next-generation robot called Versius. 

(Photo : Adrian Dennis – WPA Pool/Getty Images)
MILTON KEYNES, ENGLAND – JANUARY 24: Britain’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson (2L) talks with surgeon Mr Barrie Keeler (L) and Chief Executive Professor Joe Harrison Milton (3R) as he is shown the robot VERSIUS, used for Minimal Access Surgery (MAS), during his visit to Milton Keynes University Hospital, on January 24, 2022 in Milton Keynes, England.

Removing the Tumor

The patient named Martin Nugent had a 6 cm tumor in his esophagus and it was successfully removed by upper gastrointestinal (GI) surgeons Simon Higgs and Steve Hornby.

After the tumor was removed, Nugent’s stomach was raised and connected to his esophagus to prevent him from losing his life.

Gloucestershire Royal and Cheltenham General Hospitals now have three cutting-edge robots thanks to CMR Surgical’s Versius robot, which can ultimately revolutionize surgical operations. 

Following surgery in July, 61-year-old Nugent is now embracing a second chance at life with his children, grandkids, and wife Jacqui.

“To have been given a second chance to see my grandchildren, my children, and my wife has meant so much to me. The team at the GRH saved my life and I’ll be forever grateful to them for doing so,” Nugent said in an interview with Gloucestershire Live.  

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Minimal Access Surgery

The thoracic step of an esophagectomy has previously been carried out at GRH using open surgery. A minimal access or keyhole surgical method was made possible by the Versius surgical robot. 

Surgical robotics makes it possible to perform minimal access surgery, which benefits patient outcomes and can speed up recovery. Patients benefit from this surgery because it involves fewer complications, less scarring, and smaller incisions. 

With the installation of the Versius robot last year, the GRH became the first NHS hospital in the UK to launch an upper GI program using CMR Surgical’s robot. A multi-specialty program that includes colorectal surgery has now been established with the robot’s induction. 

Higgs, an upper GI consultant, emphasized the significance of bringing Versius to the hospital so that patients undergoing both common operations like cholecystectomies and more intricate treatments can benefit from the quality and precision that robotic surgery delivers. 

He added that the adoption of Versius paves a better path for the field since more patients will undergo minimal access surgery and be treated with such a top-notch technology.  

Related Article: Stanford University Researchers Develop Robotic Exoskeleton Boots Made For People With Limited Mobility


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