Dr. Brian B. Quebbemann, one of the country’s leading experts in minimally invasive bariatric surgery, has successfully performed a single-incision vertical sleeve gastrectomy using the SPIDER® Surgical System.

This marks the first time the SPIDER Surgical System has been used to perform this procedure. Released on a limited basis beginning in March, SPIDER has been used by surgeons to perform other procedures including colon re-sections, kidney and gallbladder removals, and gastric banding.

Quebbemann performed the operation at the Advanced Surgical Partners Surgery Center in Costa Mesa, Calif.

A vertical sleeve gastrectomy – typically reserved for severely obese patients – dramatically minimizes the size of a patient’s stomach and is one of the fastest growing forms of bariatric surgery. Before using SPIDER, Quebbemann relied on conventional laparoscopic techniques and equipment that required his making five separate small incisions in a patient’s abdomen.

Quebbemann is surgical director at The N.E.W. Program in Newport Beach, Calif., a medical and surgical center that offers a comprehensive, multi-specialty team approach to patients battling weight disorders. He commended how well the SPIDER platform minimizes physical stress on patients while also providing complete intraabdominal access for surgeons.

“Instead of making several incisions for surgical instruments, I simply make one small incision that’s hidden in the patient’s belly button and insert the SPIDER,” Quebbemann said. “I then expand the internal portion of the device, similar to expanding an umbrella. This allows me to clearly see the anatomy and accurately perform the operation. When I’m finished, I close the system and remove it through the small incision, leaving almost no visible scar.”

SPIDER’s proprietary expansion technology is unique – it is not available in any other surgical device today. In addition, SPIDER contains four working channels through which the surgeon inserts a camera and instruments.

Two of the channels are flexible, providing surgeons with true left and true right instrumentation, a marked contrast to other single-port instruments that force a surgeon to cross his hands to operate.

“The benefits of SPIDER are truly significant,” Quebbemann said. “Not only is the patient’s pain minimized and the recovery faster, but there is a remarkable cosmetic benefit of undergoing weight loss surgery with essentially no visible scar.”

Since opening The N.E.W. Program in 2000, surgeons there have performed more than 3,000 minimally invasive bariatric procedures. A long-standing member of the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery, Quebbemann is a diplomat of the American Board of Surgery, a member of the North American Society for the Study of Obesity and a fellow of the American College of Surgeons. TransEnterix, a fast-growing medical device company, created the SPIDER Surgical System. TransEnterix partners with leading medical thought-leaders to rapidly develop pioneering technologies that advance minimally invasive surgery.

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