Restoring Health Robotically
by Audra Mincey
Treating Stage 2 Endometrial Cancer with a Robotic Hysterectomy & Radiation
Ramona Olson has always chosen the healthier route in life. She exercises often, eats balanced and nutritious meals, never smokes and rarely drinks. So, when the 56-year old administrative assistant was told by the doctor that she had cancer, it just didn't make sense. "I felt let down by my body and good habits," explains Olson.
"I was petrified, I had a complete meltdown, I thought I was going to die"
In October 2011, Olson was diagnosed with Stage 2 endometrial cancer. Women over the age of 50 who haven't gone through menopause can be at a higher risk of getting this form of cancer. Weeks before her diagnosis, Olson was having abnormal stomach pains and started hemorrhaging. A quick trip to the ER changed her life forever. "I was petrified, I had a complete meltdown, I thought I was going to die," says Olson. Both of Olson's parents had passed away from the disease and she wasn't going to let it take her own.
Dr. Kevin Davis, Olson’s oncologist, helped calm her fears and anxieties about the diagnosis and recommended that surgery be the immediate option to get rid of her cancer. "I felt so comfortable and so reassured that I was going be ok," says Olson. Davis suggested a full hysterectomy and Olson was the perfect candidate to receive her surgery robotically because her cancer was in its early stages. "Having robotic surgery is less invasive and gives the patient a quicker recovery time and better results," explains Davis.
The procedure Olson underwent is called da Vinci® Hysterectomy. This state-of-the-art surgery is designed to give the patient less pain, less risk of infection and minimal scarring. The 3D technology allows doctors to control the tiny instruments with a magnified view giving them ultimate control of movement inside the body.
"I don't know if I would have done this well if I didn’t have this technology and hadn't seen Dr. Davis."
Olson was amazed at the outcome of her surgery after returning to work only a week and half after surgery. "I don't know if I would have done this well if I didn’t have this technology and hadn't seen Dr. Davis. I feel pretty darn good," says Olson. After recently completing radiation her cancer is now in remission. Olson says she has a new appreciation for life and is glad she came to Swedish. "I feel very blessed. From the moment we walked in there, it was just a great experience and now my cancer is gone."