Sep 29, 2016
Robots have been used at Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust to carry out kidney transplants in full for the first time in the UK.
We awarded a grant to the renal team to undertake kidney transplants using robotic technology to both extract the organ from the donor and implant it in the recipient. Now the new technology has resulted in two patients recovering using only paracetamol rather than morphine and leaving hospital after four days. The operations took place earlier this month on Andrew Brooks, 58, who received a kidney donated by his wife Tracy, and on Siobhan Morris, 42.
Andrew recalls: “My operation started at around midday on Saturday and I came round later that evening – I was up on my feet the following day, which was incredible. Recovery from open surgery can take weeks, so being able to go home just a few days afterwards is wonderful.”
Thanks to our funding, the Trust is the first in the country to use the technology to implant donated kidneys in patients, speeding up people’s recovery and minimising discomfort. This new approach, which uses the advanced da Vinci Xi robots to perform ‘keyhole’ surgery (also known as laparoscopic surgery), is revolutionising a procedure that has remained unchanged for 50 years. The machines are controlled by surgeons but computers and precision motors allow greater accuracy.
Nizam Mamode, transplant surgeon at Guy’s and St Thomas’ says: “Carrying out laparoscopic operations in this way is a major development, making kidney transplants more bearable for patients and potentially saving the NHS money.”
Our Head of Health Investment, Michael Wright, says: “We have been supporting our partners at the Trust to use advanced robotics in surgery for many years. This exciting new step will improve a procedure radically, bringing great benefits to people undergoing transplants in our local area and beyond, and setting a precedent for the rest of the country.”
Photograph includes surgeons Nizam Mamode and Nicos Kessaris with mentor Professor Pranjal Modi (centre)
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