On November 6th, OHSU hosted the Contemporary Use of Transoral Robotic Surgery (TORS) for Benign and Malignant Disease of the Head and Neck. TORS is a new technique for treating benign and malignant tumors of the head and neck. New reports suggested that TORS may decrease surgical complications and the length of the hospital stay after surgery. The use of robotic arms allows the surgeon to get to areas of disease that were previously not accessible using traditional methods.
OHSU's own Neil Gross, MD was the first surgeon to perform TORS in the Northwest, and the November 6th conference was an opportunity for him, and his colleagues, to share valuable information on this new surgical technique.
The conference combined lectures with hands-on demonstrations and experiences. In addition, during the afternoon of the 6th, Lego Robotics middle-school teams from Wilsonville, Oregon and Woodland, Washington had the opportunity to take control of robots used for minimally invasive head and neck surgeries at OHSU as part of an international research competition. The students spent time with Dr Neil Gross, learning about the robots and emergency room etiquette, and then changed into surgical clothes and shoe coverings to get first-hand experience with robots.
The entire day was a huge success, with information and knowledge exchanged between participants and middle-school students.