Versius surgical robot used for first time in an Italian public hospital

  • Policlinico di Milano is the first public hospital in Italy to begin using Versius to perform keyhole (minimal access) surgery
  • Versius is being used by the hospital in a multi-specialty programme including thoracic and general surgery

CMR Surgical (CMR) – a global surgical robotics business – today announced the introduction of the Versius® Surgical Robotic System, at Policlinico di Milano, a leading research hospital and care institute (IRCCS), and one of the largest healthcare facilities in Lombardy, Italy. Within the hospital, Versius will be used in a multi-specialty robotics programme including thoracic and general surgery.

The Italian surgical robotics market is one of the most significant in Europe with cutting-edge technologies being increasingly adopted. Lombardy has the highest concentration of surgical robots in Italy, however 73% of robotic surgery procedures are performed in private facilities.i Policlinico di Milano is the first public hospital in Italy to use Versius, potentially opening the door for more patients in the country to access robotic keyhole surgery.

Mark Slack, Chief Medical Officer at CMR Surgical, commented:

“It is wonderful to see Versius being used at Policlinico di Milano, one of the oldest and yet most advanced hospitals in Italy. Collaboration is embedded in our culture at CMR, contributing tremendous value towards improving the quality of surgical care. With its culture of patient safety and high-quality training, a leading hospital such as Policlinico di Milano is the ideal institution to collaborate with to showcase the potential of Versius and provide surgeons with first-hand experience of using the next generation robotic technology to perform keyhole surgery.”

Professor Luigi Boni, Director of the Department of General Surgery at Policlinico di Milano commented:

“At Policlinico di Milano, we are committed to investing in the best cutting-edge technologies for the benefit of our patients. The introduction of Versius in a public facility such as the Policlinico di Milano, could increase the possibilities of access to these new technologies by all citizens. Operating using Versius has enabled us to perform more keyhole surgery, allowing us to offer benefits such as faster recovery times, less time in hospital and reduced risk of infection to our patients.”

At Policlinico di Milano, Versius will be used to perform a range of procedures including cholecystectomy, lower anterior resection and pulmonary resection surgery, a procedure used to treat lung cancer. Using robotic keyhole surgery in these cases can significantly reduce the physical strain of surgery for the surgeon. In comparison to open surgery, keyhole surgery has also been shown to reduce recovery time for a patient from weeks to days and can lower the risk of surgical site infections – an issue that is estimated to cost health services across Europe up to €19 billion per annum.ii

Professor Mario Nosotti, Director of the Department of Thoracic Surgery and Lung Transplantations of the Policlinico di Milano, said:

“Lombardy healthcare system has always shown great interest in robotic surgery. The installation of the Versius robot and in general the implementation of these advanced medical tools represents a major step forward for public health. The minimally invasive approach of these technologies in the most complex surgical procedures, such as thoracic surgery, will allow to reduce the post-operative hospitalisation time, which is a great advantage both for the patient and for the whole healthcare system. Finally, the accuracy of the surgical gesture is amplified by the robotic instrument, resulting in even more effective and radical interventions.”

Versius is now established as a valuable surgical tool in a number of hospitals across Europe, India, Australia and the Middle East, where it has been used to perform procedures across gynaecology, general surgery, thoracic surgery and urology.