Kindergarten Teacher and da Vinci Surgery Patient
East Tawas, Michigan
someone with real anxiety about medical procedures, I would highly recommend
the da Vinci procedure for endometriosis. It was less invasive and not painful.”
Teacher Gives MidMichigan an A+ After Her Da Vinci Surgery
Kindergarten teacher Melissa Blomquist remembers having two concerns when her gynecologist recommended surgery for her severe endometriosis.
“I have real anxiety about medical procedures,” she said. “I did have one surgery, but I’ve never broken a bone, had stitches, or even had a bee sting. I also wanted to spend the least amount of time away from my classroom and my students.”
For over 10 years, Melissa’s endometriosis had become increasingly serious. The condition occurs when pieces of the tissue that lines the uterus also implant themselves in the abdominal cavity, causing extensive lesions, scar tissue and adhesions to pelvic organs.
Melissa also has ovarian cysts, which her gynecologist, John Lieberman, D.O., has monitored with ultrasound scans at her yearly visits.
This spring, one cyst had grown large enough that Dr. Lieberman recommended surgery to remove the cysts, along with as much of the endometrial implants as possible. For this precise and potentially complicated procedure, he was glad to be able to use the da Vinci® Si Surgical System.
“Less-invasive surgery sounded good to me,” Melissa said, “and Dr. Lieberman was very confident in the robotic surgery. I have been going to him for years and have absolute trust and faith in him. He explained exactly what he wanted to do and how he wanted to do it. I told him if he was confident, so was I.”
On the day of the outpatient procedure, Melissa and her husband, Mark, left home in East Tawas at 6 a.m. and drove to MidMichigan Medical Center–Midland for the procedure.
During surgery, Dr. Lieberman, along with fellow Obstetrician and Gynecologist Elvira O’Brien, M.D., removed many cysts and much of the endometrial implants, as well as Melissa’s left ovary and left fallopian tube. Her appendix was also removed after a consult confirmed that it needed to be removed.
The same day, Melissa and Mark drove back home to East Tawas. While her neck and shoulders were sore and stiff for a few days because she was placed in a tilted position during the procedure, Melissa said she felt no pain at the surgical site. “They gave me a prescription for pain, but I only had to take one pill,” she said.
There were just five tiny incisions, and they healed fast. “The procedure was in April,” she said. “I knew that by summer, when we spend a lot of time in the pool and at the beach, they would hardly be noticeable.”
Melissa was thrilled to miss only five days in the classroom. And just two weeks after surgery, Dr. Lieberman cleared her for all normal activities including things like vacuuming and lifting. Six weeks out, she reported feeling very well with no problems.
“I would highly recommend the da Vinci procedure for endometriosis. It was less invasive and not painful,” she said. “Dr. Lieberman has once again reinforced my feelings of utmost confidence. I’ll be a patient of his as long as he is in practice. My whole experience at MidMichigan was wonderful.”
Da Vinci is a registered trademark of Intuitive Surgical, Inc.
Currently, MidMichigan is using this technology for gynecologic surgery, such as hysterectomy, and urological procedures including prostatectomy. For more information about the da Vinci system and the procedures performed at MidMichigan, visit www.midmichigan.org/davinci.