Section: News

St. Joseph Health, Queen of the Valley Medical Center Upgrades Robotic System


(Napa, Calif. – December 13, 2016) St. Joseph Health, Queen of the Valley Medical Center is excited to offer patients a new, minimally-invasive option for certain gynecological, urological and general surgeries using the latest technology in robotic surgery, the da Vinci® Xi™ Surgical System. The da Vinci Xi system replaces the existing robotic and minimally invasive technology that has been in place at Queen of the Valley for the past decade. Funding for the system was provided through donations from Napa community members to the Queen of the Valley Foundation.

Edward Chough, MD, general surgeon and head of Queen of the Valley’s robotics committee, recently performed the first procedure using the new robotic system. His patient, Daniel Young of Napa, had endured a large incarcerated ventral hernia, which means his intestines and other abdominal contents were pushing into a weakened area of the abdominal wall, forming a balloon-like sac.

Dr. Chough nimbly maneuvered the da Vinci Xi robot’s thin arms and closed the weakened tissue, reinforcing the area with mesh. The robot’s newly designed joints offer physicians like Dr. Chough a fuller range of motion than is possible with the human hand.

“This minimally invasive technology offers smaller and fewer incisions, allowing patients to recover faster,” said Dr. Chough. “Dan’s operation was very successful. Not only was he able to return home less than two hours after the procedure, he was able to play in the Napa Valley Country Club Turkey Shoot less than 3 weeks after surgery. That would have been absolutely impossible without this technology."

“I couldn’t have been happier with the procedure. It was seamless. From the nurses to the doctors, everyone on my care team did a great job,” said Young. “The incisions, only about an inch in length, are already beginning to disappear. I love to golf and I was able to play in a tournament just a few weeks later.”

According to Dr. Chough, the da Vinci Xi improves the surgeon’s dexterity and visibility. The arms mount onto a new and improved overhead boom which can pivot in any direction, allowing the surgeon to explore other areas of the body, if needed, without scheduling a separate surgery. The endoscope, which attaches to any of the robot’s four arms, displays a high-definition, 3D image, enhancing the surgeon’s vision into the inside of the body.

“The results our physicians have seen using the da Vinci systems have been outstanding. This new system will only enhance and expand our medical staff’s capabilities, ensuring our neighbors continue to have access to cutting-edge care, close to home,” said Larry Coomes, Interim Chief Executive.

Dr. Chough is one of several surgeons on Queen of the Valley’s medical staff who are trained to use the new Xi platform. To date, more than 46 surgeries have been performed, including removal of a prostate or kidney, hysterectomy, gallbladder removal and hernia repair. In the Bay Area, only 16 of 38 da Vinci systems offer the new Xi technology; Queen of the Valley is the only robotics program with da Vinci Xi technology in Napa/Solano counties. For more information, visit

About Queen of the Valley Medical Center

Queen of the Valley Medical Center is a 208-bed, acute-care facility founded by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange. The Queen is the largest health care facility and one of the largest employers in Napa County. Services provided include a Regional Heart Center, a Regional Orthopedic Center, a Regional Cancer Center approved with commendations by the American College of Surgeons, the Peggy Herman Neuroscience Center, maternity and infant care, inpatient and outpatient minimally invasive surgery, and full-service emergency department, among many other specialty services. More information about Queen of the Valley Medical Center can be found at

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