One Patient's Experience with da Vinci Robotic Surgery

When Gwen Kahler, a manager in the lab at Sky Ridge Medical Center, learned that she needed a hysterectomy and sacrocolpopexy, or pelvic prolapse surgery, she decided to weigh all of her options. Gwen did her research, listened to the recommendations of friends and colleagues and went to see four different doctors before deciding on Drs. Steven Grover and Michael Glass for a combined procedure of a hysterectomy and a sacrocolpopexy, the gold standard for prolapse repair.

She had never had major surgery before, so when told by her doctors that she would be a great candidate for da Vinci robotic surgery, Gwen was excited. 

Gwen Kahler

“Traditionally, pelvic prolapse would have been treated with vaginal hysterectomy and vaginal repair, and sometimes the vaginal prolapse problem came back after this surgery. This was an important consideration for Gwen, especially since she is only 45-years-old,“ explained Dr. Grover.

Working in the healthcare field, Gwen already knew a little about da Vinci robotics. At a demonstration at the hospital, she had actually watched the robot maneuver under the command of her daughter.

The Benefits of da Vinci Surgery

“Talking to other people, it just seemed that da Vinci surgery is so much easier than traditional surgery,” Gwen said. “When the doctors told me it was an option, much less invasive and with the faster healing time, I was happy to take advantage of it.”

“The 3D visualization that the da Vinci robot gives us allows us to perform this procedure through small keyhole incisions on the patient’s abdomen. This helped Gwen to have a much quicker recovery as compared with an open procedure," said Dr. Grover.

The benefits of da Vinci robotic surgery include smaller incisions and less blood loss, which means the patient has a faster recovery. Gwen can vouch for that. “I was so pleased with the whole experience. The doctors and the staff were wonderful, and I didn’t need any prescription drugs or narcotics during my recovery.”

Gwen received six small incisions and was up and walking the same afternoon of her surgery. In fact, she was able to shower and go home the next day. Now, she doesn’t hesitate to tell everyone about her experience with da Vinci. “I’m so glad I had faith in the robot!” Gwen said.