30 April 2024

First patient to have robotic-assisted hysterectomy for endometriosis in region praises specialist team


A surgical team at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust have successfully carried out the region’s first robotic-assisted hysterectomies for severe endometriosis.

The state-of-the-art surgery, which was performed using a robotic surgical system by a team of specially trained doctors, nurses and anaesthetists, is set to help hundreds of women suffering with severe endometriosis and other benign yet debilitating gynaecological conditions of the womb.

Katie Titman, 42, the first patient to benefit, said she was able to resume normal activities within a week of having a total hysterectomy (removal of the entire womb and cervix) thanks to the robotic-assisted surgery. This compares to an average recovery time of 6-8 weeks for traditional surgery dependent on the type of hysterectomy undertaken.

The multi-armed robot, which also speeds up the time taken to carry out the operation, has wrist-like instruments that enable the surgical team to perform intricate and delicate manoeuvres, including 360° rotation in tight spaces that surpasses what the human hand can achieve alone.

Throughout the operation, the robot is controlled by the surgeon, who sits at a console, near the operating table, with a magnified, high-definition 3D view of the surgical site on the screen in front, giving added benefit to the operating theatre team.

Pioneering surgery helps Katie recover faster

Katie Titman, from Lowedges, has lived with “horrendous pain” from endometriosis for most of her life, suffering with stomach pains and long-lasting heavy periods. In 2013 she underwent a laparoscopy, which removed some of the endometrial tissue. She then went on to have monthly injections before now having a full hysterectomy.

The robotic-assisted hysterectomy enabled surgeons to remove her entire womb and cervix through five incisions less than 1cm long on her abdomen.

Since having the robotic hysterectomy, Katie, who was “gobsmacked” when she saw the minimal scarring on her abdomen, has remained pain-free.

“I was up and about, walking around and undertaking normal day-to-day activities within a week of surgery. It’s been much easier than I expected. I don’t feel like I’ve had major surgery at all. So far, the pain from the endometriosis has been eliminated. It’s made my life so much easier.”

As well as a quicker recovery, Katie was also full of praise for the hospital staff:

“The staff were fantastic, so lovely and made me feel really comfortable.”

Great stride forward in women's health

The first robotic hysterectomies were led by Consultant Gynaecologist Mr Karim Abdallah who described the advancement as a “remarkable achievement” for women’s health:

“The successful introduction of this pioneering surgery is a great stride forward in improving the health and wellbeing of women living with benign yet debilitating gynaecological conditions. Sheffield is the first in South Yorkshire to deliver this cutting-edge surgery which is set to help young, active women who have suffered for many years with common gynaecological conditions such as endometriosis.”



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