Introduction of Versius leads to increase in number of patients receiving minimal access surgery at Klinikum Chemnitz

~ Number of patients receiving minimal access surgery at Klinikum Chemnitz has increased from 60% to 75% for right-sided hemicolectomy procedures and from 35% to 50% for thoracic procedures.

~ Klinikum Chemnitz has also reported improvements in patient recovery timelines, surgeon ergonomics, and team engagement.

CMR Surgical (CMR) – the global surgical robotics business – and Klinikum Chemnitz have today announced results from their Versius® Robotic Assisted Surgery (RAS) programme, including improvements in the provision of minimal access surgery (MAS), patient outcomes and surgical staff wellbeing.

Every year in Germany, more than 427,000 patients have open surgery for soft tissue disease or functional problems in the abdomen or thorax, despite the widely acknowledged benefits of MAS.[i] In 2019, hospitals in Saxony offered MAS to the lowest percentage of patients nationally, with only 64% of patients offered this approach[ii]. As a major contributor to patient care in Saxony, Klinikum Chemnitz determined that there was scope to convert many surgical procedures to MAS techniques by partnering with CMR on the delivery of a multi-speciality Versius RAS programme, to deliver the benefits of reduced length of stay and improved outcomes for patients.

Following the first 400 surgical procedures with Versius, Klinikum Chemnitz have reported that the number of patients receiving open surgery for right-sided hemicolectomy procedures has dropped to 25% from 40%. Similarly, 50% of thoracic patients are now offered a minimal access approach, compared to 35% prior to the introduction of Versius.

Dr. Sven Seifert, Head Physician, Clinic for Thoracic, Vascular and Endovascular Surgery, Klinikum Chemnitz, commented: “Thoracic surgeons have been waiting for a RAS system suited for work between the ribcage for some time. For us, the ideal system needs to bring the benefits of RAS, with the dimensions of the instruments used in manual thoracoscopic surgery. Our early experience is that Versius fits this exact criteria.”

Mediastinal surgery has also become easier to perform since introducing Versius. Dr. Sven Seifert continued: “Previously only 4 to 5 of these procedures were undertaken per year, and now it’s around 40 per year. For many years, one centre in all of Germany (Berlin) accepted referrals for tumours of the thymus. Patients can now also be referred here, which is one important step towards providing egality of care in Germany.”

Prof. Dr. Lutz Mirow, Head Physician, Department of General and Visceral Surgery, Klinikum Chemnitz, commented on the implementation of Versius: “No major construction work was required to implement the programme and Versius can easily be moved between specialties within the operating department. Utilisation of the system has therefore not been limited by the footprint, manoeuvrability or commitment of the entire system to one operating room, enabling high utilisation, scalability and value for money.”

Klinikum Chemnitz have also reported improvements in surgeon wellbeing and team engagement. A survey found that around 15% of surgeons in Germany think they may need to retire early due to the physical impact of conducting laparoscopic surgery[iii].

Prof. Dr. Lutz Mirow reported that: “The open Versius console allows you to sit or stand whilst operating, helping the surgeon to retain a neutral neck and spine position. I expect this will have a positive medium to long term impact, potentially extending my working career as a surgeon. What’s more, Versius has been a clear contributor to teambuilding and a highly engaged surgical team.”

Mark Slack, Chief Medical Officer and Co-Founder of CMR Surgical, commented: “We are proud to partner with Klinikum Chemnitz and to celebrate the progress of their Versius RAS programme to date. We designed Versius to overcome the barriers to performing MAS, and we are delighted to see this data demonstrate that Versius is helping more patients have access to the highest quality of surgical care.”

[i] CMR Surgical analysis. Data on File.

[ii] CMR Surgical analysis. Data on File.

[iii] Feeling the strain: The physical and mental impact of performing surgery

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