February 13, 2024

Can I Drive Home from a Robotic-Assisted Cystectomy?

Woman driving a car

If you’re experiencing frequent urination, urgency, pain, or blood in your urine, that could be a sign that there is a problem with your urinary system. If that’s the case, your doctor may recommend a robotic-assisted cystectomy.

What Is a Cystectomy?

A partial or full removal of the bladder is called a cystectomy. Although robotic-assisted cystectomy has “robot” in the name, a specially trained operator controls the equipment throughout the process. They use advanced technology from da Vinci Systems that allows for precise movements of the devices necessary to perform the assessment.

This procedure uses a thin camera to directly visualize the bladder, allowing for biopsies, stone removal, and even treatment of some disorders, all through a single, minimally invasive tube.

Benefits of Robotic-Assisted Cystectomy

Your doctor will determine if robotic technology is appropriate for your cystectomy based on your needs. If it is, you (and they) benefit in several ways, including:

  • Enhanced imagery. Your doctor sees the areas they’re inspecting in a high-resolution, highly magnified view that is much clearer and more comprehensive than their perspective if they were standing beside the procedure table.
  • Increased range of motion. Your doctor can perform movements that would be difficult to execute without robotic assistance.
  • Reduced post-procedure discomfort. Because there’s less tissue disturbance with a robotic-assisted cystectomy, you may experience less discomfort as your anesthesia wears off.
  • Faster recovery. Although cystectomy doesn’t involve cutting tissue, it can cause some tissue trauma, which is lessened when robotic technology is used. This can result in a faster recovery. 

Robotic-Assisted Cystectomy: Anesthesia Means No Post-Procedure Driving

Cystectomy is typically an outpatient procedure, meaning you go home the same day. However, it requires general anesthesia (where you are unconscious) or numbing of the lower half of the body.

In either case, you won’t be able to drive for 24 hours afterward. Consequently, you should arrange for a ride from the procedure site in advance.

Talk with Your Baptist Health Doctor About Robotic-Assisted Cystectomy

A robotic-assisted cystectomy is a relatively quick and painless outpatient procedure thanks, in part, to the advanced technology. If your doctor needs insights on the condition of your urethra and bladder, they will talk with you about whether you’re a good candidate for this approach.

If you don’t have a Baptist Health physician, you can find one near you in our online provider directory.

Learn More.