ADC surgeon first to test latest advance in robotic surgery

Da Vinci Xi system represents leap forward in capabilities of minimally-invasive surgeries

da vinci xi surgical arms

Image source: Intuitive Surgical, Inc.


Dr. Francis Buzad with Vinci Xi robotic arm unit

Dr. Francis Buzad with Vinci Xi robotic arm unit

Dr. Francis Buzad, ADC surgeon, who pioneered the use of robotic surgical tools in Central Texas, has been testing the latest evolution of robotic technology.

The da Vinci Xi system has broader capabilities, which means more patients may be able to benefit from its use.

Intuitive Surgical, Inc. announced in early April the technology had been cleared for use in the US  by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Soon after, the first Xi system was installed at St. David’s Texas Institute for Robotic Surgery. Dr. Buzad is one of the first surgeons in the world to use the new system.

Technological advance benefits patients

Dr. Buzad says the Xi system is different from previous versions in a particularly significant way.

All four arms have the same capabilities, which means the surgeon has more flexibility during the operation and better visibility. The camera can be placed on any of the arms, so the surgeon can see inside from many different angles and perspectives. The arms are also able to reach more of the body without needing to be repositioned.

This means patients with more complex conditions — patients who may need to undergo a total colectomy or complex biliary surgery — may now be ideal candidates for a minimally-invasive approach.

How robotic surgeries compare

Dr. Francis Buzad da Vinci Xi console

Dr. Francis Buzad using da Vinci Xi console.

Dr. Buzad says compared to open surgery, minimally-invasive procedures using robotics are almost always better.

“Blood loss is less, trauma to and exposure of the internal organs is markedly reduced, thereby greatly increasing recovery,” he said.  “The technical performance of any task on the robot is much more precise, thereby improving the probability of a desired successful outcome.”

And compared to laparoscopic surgery, Dr. Buzad says robotic surgeries make it possible for more patients to be candidates. There is also less of a chance of the surgeon needing to switch mid-procedure to open surgery.

“The new da Vinci Xi leaves very few surgical procedures that cannot be performed in a minimally invasive fashion,” Dr. Buzad said.


Learn more about the da Vinci Xi system and its capabilities in this video from Intuitive Surgical:


  1. Avatar Cheryl N Burton says

    In Feb. 2013, Dr. Buzad operated on my colon with the da Vinci. I did not really know what to expect, even after he explained everything to me. This was definitely something new. I agreed for him to use it for my surgery. I do not have large scars on my abdomen area. There are five small 1/2 inch scars now with a larger scar slightly above the pubic area. These are barely noticeable except two of the small scars, one under the left rib cage and the other on the right just below the belly button, do sting, become red and swell. They look just like I have been bitten or stung by a wasp. Since the surgery, that has happened at least 4 times. Those two are the only ones that react that way. But if I had to have the surgery again, the da Vinci would be the way to go! Thank you Dr. Francis Buzad for taking great care of me!