Summit Medical Group's Dr. Andrew Gumbs put on a wireless headset similar to the ones used every day for cell phones, and spoke to ViKY® ("Vicky"), a motorized surgical assistant that was developed by EndoControl Medical in Grenoble, France.

ViKY® was designed to move and hold an endoscope, which functions as the surgeon’s eyes during minimally invasive surgical procedures. ViKY® smoothly and precisely moved the endoscope around the operative site as per Dr. Gumbs’ vocal commands. By holding and moving the endoscope exactly to where he wants it, ViKY® provides Dr. Gumbs with an extra hand during the operation enabling him to perform advanced minimally invasive surgical procedures such as a recent gastrectomy.

"ViKY® not only allows surgeons to precisely control the position of the scope, it also provides a stable image. Before ViKY® was developed surgeons had to hold and move the endoscope by hand. During advanced complex procedures this becomes very tiring and consequently image quality can suffer. This becomes very important as we are performing delicate maneuvers around critical structures. With ViKY® the image is rock steady and we can perform procedures more efficiently with less surgeon fatigue." stated Dr. Gumbs.

He also said: "The extra hand that ViKY® provides helps the entire surgical team to be more efficient and helps to improve patient outcomes. In the future, advanced minimally invasive surgery will evolve with technology and motorized assistants such as ViKY®. This will enable us to do more advanced procedures and continue to improve patient outcomes. We are already using ViKY® to help us perform advanced Single Port Access procedures".