New Robotic-assisted Technology Transforms Treatment of Kidney Tumors

Porter Adventist Hospital is among a handful of centers in the country with advanced fluorescence imaging technology, called Firefly, and only the second in the region. St. Anthony Hospital in Lakewood also recently implemented the Firefly.

The Firefly addition, along with our second da Vinci Si surgical system, will allow our surgeons even greater precision and flexibility in treating their patients with kidney cancer," said Dr. Mark Jones, medical director of the PRI and the most experienced robotic kidney surgeon in the Rocky Mountain region. The rapid growth of our robotic surgery program has helped us to acquire the latest advances in robotics to better serve our patients."

Fluorescence imaging technology, coupled with real-time, 3D visualization and fully articulated instruments used by surgeons in the da Vinci Si Surgical System, can result in a higher quality of life and documented long-term survival benefits for patients with kidney cancer.

Approximately four out of five patients with small renal masses have their entire kidney removed, called a nephrectomy. Studies suggest that patients treated with a radical nephrectomy experience more cardiovascular events and an increased mortality rate over patients treated with a partial nephrectomy. In addition, patients receiving a partial nephrectomy are three times less likely to develop chronic kidney disease.

The addition of a second da Vinci Si at Porter also means that two highly-skilled specialists from different disciplines can work together during surgery. The robotic system provides a high level of precision, dexterity and control for complex surgical procedures that translate to real patient benefits, such as smaller incisions, less pain and risk of infection and shorter recovery times.

The Firefly works by identifying clear margins of kidney tumors, and more accurately identifying critical vessels and tissue during surgery. The specially designed camera and endoscopes allow surgeons to capture images of tissue and surrounding blood vessels by injecting a unique fluorescence dye that is activated by near-infrared light. In addition to standard real-time images of the surgical field, the camera can switch to view the images of tissue and surrounding blood vessels.

The PRI is the only center in the metro area to have two Si systems, giving the surgeons the capability to work on the latest technology. The Si is also equipped with a virtual skills simulator to enable surgeons to hone their robotic skills and provide a higher quality of care, as well as the Firefly fluorescence imaging system.

The Porter Robotics Institute was launched earlier this year, to bring together a group of highly-skilled and nationally-renowned and experienced surgeons from several specialties, including gynecology, urology, ear, nose and throat (ENT) and general surgery to give more surgical choice to patients throughout the region. Doctors and staff work closely together, sharing their expertise to focus on the patient experience, quality and outcomes. For more information about the Porter Robotics Institute, please visit the website at

About Porter Adventist Hospital
Porter Adventist Hospital is a full service, Nursing Magnet designated, 368-bed acute-care referral center for complex medicine and surgery patients. In addition to being ranked No. 1 for 2010 in overall cardiac care in Colorado by a national hospital reporting company, Porter specializes in cancer care, joint replacement, spinal care, advanced robotic surgery and organ transplantation. Porter is sponsored by Adventist Health System and is connected to Centura Health, Colorados health care leader, and its integrated statewide network of 13 hospitals, seven senior living communities, medical clinics, affiliated partner hospitals, Flight For Life Colorado, and home care and hospice services. Together, Porter and Centura Health provide care that transcends the walls of a hospital. Connections that only Centura Health can make. For more information about Porter Adventist Hospital, visit or the Media Room at

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