TMUH surgeon successfully completes 'mission impossible'
The China Post news staffTAIPEI, Taiwan -- A medical team headed by Dr. Liu Wei-min, director of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology under the Taipei Medical University Hospital (TMUH), recently accomplished a “mission impossible” by successfully completing a difficult surgical operation on a pregnant woman suffering ovarian adenocarcinoma and ensuring the safety of the patient and her unborn baby, according to the TMUH.
February 7, 2013, 12:03 am TWN
The woman, surnamed Liao and 13 weeks pregnant, suddenly suffered pain in the abdomen when returning to her hometown in South Taiwan in late January, and was confirmed to have a 7 to 8-cm tumor in her left ovary after receiving an ultrasound examination at a local hospital. She went to the TMUH for further examinations immediately after returning to Taipei.
As Liao and her husband wanted a healthy baby more than anything, Dr. Liu decided not to use a computed tomogram scan or magnetic resonance imaging technology to examine the tumor, lest the baby should be exposed to radiation. Instead, Liu used other methods and managed to confirm that Liao did have a stage-1 left ovarian cyst.
In order to keep both Liao and her unborn baby safe, Liu decided on Jan. 29 to use the da Vinci Robotic Surgical System to remove the tumor. Before and after the surgery, Liu had Liao take anti-abortion medication to relax her uterus and prevent her from bleeding too much during the surgery.
As a result, Liu's medical team successfully protected Liao's uterus and her 13-week-old fetus, as well as her right ovary and fallopian tube, while smoothly removing her left ovary and fallopian tube, pelvic cavity, and surrounding lymphlymphatic. The surgery took two hours to complete, and Liao lost only 20 ml of blood during the process, with only four small holes left on her stomach. Liao was discharged from the hospital on Feb. 1.
So far, Liu has completed 230 surgeries using the da Vinci Robotic Surgical System, including 35 patients with uterus cancer, 15 with cervical cancer, 10 with ovarian cancer and two with fallopian tube cancer. The outstanding records have made Dr. Liu the first in Asian to win the da Vinci Distinguished Robotic Surgeon Award.