Smaller Incisions, Bigger Impact.

After years of consistent pains that were assumed to be stomach bugs, Tito now lives life like any other 8 year old – thanks to Valley Children’s physicians with the help of surgery robots.

Since he was 2 months old, Tito went through periods where he would get such bad stomach pains it would lead to vomiting. Once Tito was old enough to communicate, he was able to identify to his family and doctors that the pain was in the left side of his lower back – where the kidneys are located. An ultrasound determined there was a significant amount of fluid stuck inside his kidney, prompting a referral to Dr. Lily Wang, Valley Children’s pediatric urologist. It was determined Tito suffered from hydronephrosis – meaning there was a blockage in the tubes that typically drain urine from the kidneys, causing the kidneys to swell up. After multiple appointments, Tito underwent surgery in August of 2021.

Surgery typically means hours under anesthesia, days in the hospital and a longer recovery at home. However, thanks to robotic-assisted surgery with the da Vinci® Surgical System, Dr. Wang was able to perform complex minimally invasive surgery with precision and accuracy, getting Tito back to being a kid faster.

“Robotic surgery is part of a bigger picture that helps patients getting back to being kids sooner,” explained Dr. Wang. “Compared to traditional surgery, procedures using robotic technology such as the da Vinci robot, results in less pain and scarring due to minimally invasive incisions.”

The da Vinci system translates a surgeon’s hand movements, bending and rotating the instruments while performing the procedure. The tiny wristed instruments move like a human hand, but with greater precision. The da Vinci vision system simultaneously delivers highly magnified, 3D views of the area, while using a device that only requires a few small incisions be made.

Thanks to experts in their field like Dr. Wang and innovative technologies like the da Vinci® Surgical System, children like Tito are able to get back to the important things in life – like being an 8 year old.