Surgical services to get back to the life you love

General Surgery

Many general surgeries can now be performed using the da Vinci® surgical system including colorectal, gallbladder and hernia repair procedures.


CHI Memorial’s colorectal surgeons have advanced training in robotic techniques.


Robotic-assisted colorectal surgery is used to remove cancerous growth from the colon. The enhanced accuracy offered by the da Vinci ® surgical system allows the surgeon to precisely remove cancerous tissue while protecting the nearby healthy tissue. 

Your surgeon may use the da Vinci surgical system’s Endowrist® Stapler to remove the malignant or cancerous part of the colon during surgery. They may also use Firefly Fluorescence Imaging to find blood vessels with good blood supply, that aren’t typically seen under normal lights. This enhanced view lets your surgeon ensure adequate blood supply when reconnecting the rectum and colon. 

A faster return to normal bowel function, ability to tolerate a normal diet, reduced complications, minimal scarring and a quicker recovery are all benefits of robotic surgery. 

Lower Anterior Resection 

Lower anterior resection (LAR) is a common surgery for rectal cancer and is occasionally performed to remove a diseased part of the intestine in cases of diverticulitis. During the minimally invasive procedure, the part of your rectum containing cancer is removed. The remaining part is reconnected to your colon so you can continue to use your bowels normally.  

Abdominoperineal Resection (APR) 

APR is a surgery used to treat cancer of the anus or rectum and, on rare occasion, for some traumatic rectum injuries. To remove the cancer, your surgeon will remove all the lower part of your colon, your rectum and anus. After the anus and rectum are removed, a colostomy is created. This involves bringing a part of your colon to an opening in the surface of your skin. This new opening is called a stoma, and it allows waste to pass out of your body. 

Proctectomy with J-Pouch Reconstruction

The most common reason for a patient to need a J-pouch is due to ulcerative colitis, one of the two types of inflammatory bowel disease. Ulcerative colitis is a chronic condition of the large intestine (your colon), where the colon lining becomes inflamed and develops tiny open sores, or ulcers, that produce pus and mucus. The combination of ulceration and inflammation can cause frequent trips to the bathroom and abdominal discomfort. The other type of inflammatory bowel disease is Crohn’s disease, which is not curable by surgery. 

The J-pouch, a minimally invasive laparoscopic procedure, is a way for a patient who has been living with the pain and discomfort of this chronic condition to find relief from symptoms, have better control of his bowel movements, and it does not require a permanent ileostomy. J-pouches also are used for familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP) and occasionally, colon and rectal cancer. When the colon (large intestine) and rectum are removed (due to chronic colitis, cancer or other colorectal diseases), another method must be devised for solid waste to exit the body. 

Surgically creating a “J” shaped reservoir, or J-pouch, out of an individual’s own small bowel (small intestine) is an alternate way to store and pass stool. This eliminates the need for a permanent external bag (ostomy). The procedure is most often performed in two stages, usually performed two or three months apart. 

Transabdominal Repair for Rectal Prolapse

Rectal prolapse occurs when the rectum falls from its normal position in the pelvic area, causing all or part of the rectum to extend out of the anus. It’s common in older adults who have a history of weak pelvic floor muscles or long-term constipation. Other symptoms include pain in the anus and rectum and rectal bleeding from the inner lining of the rectum. These are rarely life-threatening symptoms but can greatly diminish a person’s quality of life. Using the da Vinci ® surgical system, surgeons can repair the prolapse, restore continence and help patients return to normal function without the need for an open procedure. 

Learn more about da Vinci® colorectal surgery. 

Single-site gallbladder removal is a virtually scar-less procedure allowing surgeons to perform gallbladder removal from one incision in the belly button. With any robotic procedure, the surgeon is in complete control and translates his or her movements into smaller, more precise movements of tiny instruments inside your body. Advances in the instruments allow the surgeon to move their wrist and hands in a 360-degree rotation. And as the technology evolves, so will the type of surgeries that can be performed using this method.

Learn more about da Vinci® gallbladder surgery. 

Today's hernia repair options include new techniques and materials that can make surgery less invasive, recovery faster, and recurrence less likely. Minimally invasive robotic-assisted hernia repair is proven to be successful in treating incisional and inguinal hernias for patients of all ages. 

Learn more about da Vinci® hernia surgery. 

During robotic-assisted anti-reflux surgery, the surgeon operates through several small incisions instead of a large open incision. He or she has a 3D view inside your body, and use instruments that bend and rotate – even farther than the human hand can bend! The instruments are guided by the surgeon (who sits at a console nearby).

If a hiatal hernia is shown to be causing symptoms of GERD, this is repaired first. The surgeon then wraps the upper curve of your stomach around the esophagus and stitches it into place, strengthening the connection between the stomach and esophagus and stopping acid from rising into the esophagus as easily.

Surgeons using the da Vinci® surgical system can perform intricate procedures with greater precision, improved visualization and depth perception, and enhanced dexterity. Patients who undergo robotic-assisted surgical procedures typically experience the following benefits: 

  • less pain
  • shorter hospital stays
  • less reliance on opioid pain medications
  • fewer complications
  • less blood loss
  • minimal scarring 
  • quicker return to normal activities