Robot will be the future of surgery at hospital

The Da Vinci robot for which the Rocky Appeal hopes to buy.
The Da Vinci robot for which the Rocky Appeal hopes to buy.

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IT LOOKS like something from the future, but this could soon be at work at Queen Alexandra Hospital.

The Rocky Appeal has launched its latest fundraising campaign – to buy a robot which carries out operations.

At around £1.6m, surgeons say the equipment will revolutionise the way surgery is performed.

The robot can perform keyhole surgery which means surgeons will be able to look inside a patient without having to cut into them.

The machine will be controlled by specially-trained consultants, and with the use of cameras will be able to locate tumours in places like the head and throat.

Simon Toh, clinical director of general surgery, will be one of six consultants who will be trained to use the device.

He said: ‘This machine will add a new dimension to the surgery we offer.

‘At the moment the surgeons are outside the patient and operate in that way.

‘With the robot we can get inside and have a look around at areas that are hard to get to.

‘This means we can do this without cutting open the patient and can give scarless surgery.’

It is thought the technology will help remove cancer tumours in hard-to-access areas such as the prostate and uterus.

‘The robot will be of huge benefit for cancer patients,’ added Mr Toh.

‘The outcomes and recovery will be much better for people. We think we will be able to treat up to 600 patients each year with this robot.

‘It will be a first for the south coast area.’

A massive fundraising drive has now been launched by the founder and co-ordinator of the Rocky Appeal, Mick Lyons.

He said: ‘This truly is a very exciting piece of equipment to be getting.

‘It will make a huge difference to so many patients.’

The previous Rocky Appeal raised £3m in order to build four new digital keyhole surgery theatres.

Next month the third is due to be built and opened.

For more information on the appeal, call Mr Lyons on (023) 9228 6487 or email