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Mercy San Juan Medical Center Offers Robotic Bariatric Surgery


Mercy San Juan Medical Center is the first and only hospital in the Sacramento Valley to offer da VinciĀ® Surgical System for bariatric surgery, the latest minimally invasive approach for patients considering weight-loss surgery as opposed to losing weight through non-surgical methods.

“Mercy San Juan Medical Center is pleased to be the first to offer bariatric surgery using the da Vinci system,” said Mercy San Juan Medical Center president Brian Ivie. “We recognize that many of our patients are looking for the least invasive surgical procedure when it comes to bariatric surgery. Now, they can have the experience they are looking for at Mercy San Juan Medical Center.”

The goal of bariatric surgery is to promote healthy weight loss via hormonal and metabolic changes that greatly reduce hunger and promote a feeling of satiety. In these procedures, the stomach is generally made smaller, which also creates some feelings of restriction when a patient eats. Patients who have bariatric surgery typically experience resolution of many serious health problems including type 2 diabetes, hypertension and hyperlipidemia.

During gastric sleeve surgery, also known as vertical sleeve gastrectomy, about seventy-five percent of the patient’s stomach is removed. Similar to gastric bypass, the smaller, sleeve-shaped stomach that remains holds smaller amounts of food. The portion of the stomach which produces one of the hunger hormones is removed. Sleeve gastrectomy may be performed using open surgery, traditional laparoscopy or da Vinci Surgery.

Benjamin Shadle, MD, FACS, is a board certified bariatric surgeon and the first surgeon in Northern California to perform a robotic vertical sleeve gastrectomy.. “Because we have the robotic stapler, we are able to do a ‘totally robotic’ or ‘completely robotic’ sleeve gastrectomy as opposed to what we were doing before,” said Dr Shadle. “Previously, we were doing a lot of the work robotically and then stapling or sewing laparoscopically. Using the robotic stapler technology has allowed us to complete the operation with the robotic platform.”

da Vinci® Surgical System is designed to assist surgeons in attaining a new level of precision in surgery through enhanced vision, dexterity and control. The da Vinci system features a magnified 3D high-definition vision system and special wristed instruments that bend and rotate far greater than the human wrist. Benefits to the patient include a lower rate of complications, lower rate of wound infection and a shorter hospital stay. da Vinci® Surgical System may be a surgical option for people who are morbidly obese (40+ BMI). Read more about da Vinci® Surgical System for gastric sleeve surgery. 

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