A legacy of surgical expertise and pioneering advances in minimally invasive surgery

When you need complex surgery, it’s important to consider who will do the procedure and where it will be done. You also want to know how many procedures the surgeon has performed and the results of those surgeries. Is the surgeon skilled in the latest technologies and minimally invasive techniques? And how far will you have to travel for high-level surgical expertise?

We thought you should know you don’t have to go far for surgical excellence and innovation. We have it all right here at Main Line Health. Expert care that’s easy to get to.

What is minimally invasive surgery?

Minimally invasive surgery is a surgical approach that “minimizes” damage to the human body due to surgical incisions (cuts). While open or traditional surgery may still be the best option for some patients, many doctors are now performing a majority of their operations minimally invasively with these methods:

  • Laparoscopically – with a tiny camera and instruments that travel through a .5- to 1.5-centimeter incision, usually in the abdomen
  • Endoscopically – with a camera that can examine the inside of an organ and instruments that may be introduced through the nose, throat, rectum or another body opening

Minimally invasive surgical techniques often result in:

  • Less pain
  • Faster recovery time
  • Less scarring
  • Less blood loss
  • Less chance of the condition returning
  • Fewer readmissions to the hospital
  • Less chance for damage to healthy organs

These types of procedures are sometimes “assisted” by robotic technology.

Here at Main Line Health we have a longstanding commitment to innovation in surgical care and to always being ahead of the curve. This commitment includes early adoption and exploration of minimally invasive surgery techniques, including robotic-assisted surgery, which enables greater precision for our surgeons and in many cases improved outcomes for patients.

Be sure to read our frequently asked questions about robotic surgery and also review the risks and benefits of robotic surgery.

Building on a legacy of minimally invasive surgery and robotic surgery

Our institution-wide commitment to minimally invasive surgery includes robotic surgical expertise across the following specialties:

Members of our minimally invasive and robotic surgical team are world-renowned surgeons and pioneers in their respective fields. Our surgeons include:

  • Patrick Ross, MD, a thoracic surgeon who attended the first ever robotic-assisted surgery in 1989 at Ohio State University. Dr. Ross pioneered many of the robotic thoracic surgical procedures in use today and trains other physicians in these advanced techniques. He has performed more than 500 robotic thoracic procedures.
  • Francis P. Sutter, DO, a respected cardiac surgeon who has performed more than 1,000 robotic-assisted coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) procedures.
  • John H Marks, MD, whose father pioneered colorectal techniques still used today and whose expertise is sought by patients and physicians around the world. Dr. Marks has performed more than 2,000 laparoscopic colon resection procedures.
  • David O. Holtz, MD, the first gynecologic surgeon in Pennsylvania to perform robotic surgery procedures for uterine and cervical cancer.
  • David E. McGinnis, MD, the first surgeon in Philadelphia to do a laparoscopic prostatectomy, a lap pyeloplasty, and a lap renal cryoablation, and he has been an early adopter of many other minimally invasive urologic procedures.

Meet our team of surgeons and watch our robotic surgeon videos to learn more about our rich surgical heritage.

Surgical volumes (number of surgeries) equals surgical excellence equals lower rates of complication. We have that here at Main Line Health—where we’re building on a legacy of surgical care, quality and innovation.

Recently, Lankenau Medical Center, part of Main Line Health, was among the first three hospitals in the United States to receive the next-generation single-port robot which allows for complex surgery through a single incision instead of multiple cuts in the body. This acquisition is testament to our capabilities as well as our commitment to using the most sophisticated surgical tools to continually improve outcomes and quality of life for patients.

All four Main Line Health hospitals have new robotic surgical systems, which represent the latest generation of robotic surgery available, allowing our surgeons to offer the optimal surgery at the optimal time for the optimal outcome.

Beyond surgery: Caring for patients at every stage

With multiple convenient locations throughout the western suburbs and near the city limits of Philadelphia, Main Line Health is a preferred destination for care by people throughout and far beyond the Philadelphia region.

A rigorous screening process ensures that surgery is offered only to patients who will benefit most from operative treatment. The specific procedure that is recommended is the one that offers the best possible outcomes.

We are committed to excellence throughout the total patient experience from the first screening and diagnosis to treatment and postsurgical care including rehabilitation, and adjuvant therapy (such as chemotherapy). For patients, that means less travel, less stress and worry, and a more streamlined experience of health care. For referring physicians, it means knowing your patient is in good hands through every aspect of their care.

To schedule an appointment with a specialist at Main Line Health, call 1.866.CALL.MLH (225.5654) or use our secure online appointment request form.