Trident Medical Center Named National Case Observation Site for Minimally Invasive Robotic-Assisted

Program Led by Robotic Surgery Pioneer Cesar Santiago, MD, FACS, FASCRS

Charleston, SC (November 25, 2019) –Trident Medical Center has been designated a national Case Observation Site for minimally invasive robotic-assisted colorectal surgery. The program is led by board-certified and Fellowship-trained robotic surgery pioneer Cesar Santiago, MD, FACS, FASCRS, Tri-County Surgical Associates. Dr. Santiago has also earned designation as an Epicenter for minimally invasive robotic-assisted surgery. He is the only Epicenter-designated surgeon in South Carolina. “As a Case Observation Site surgeons from around the United States and the world will travel to Trident Medical Center to train under Dr. Santiago,” explained Trident Medical Center Chief Medical Officer Dr. Lee Biggs. “This is a testament to his skills as a surgeon and the outcomes of his patients.” Dr. Santiago joined Trident Medical Center’s medical staff in April 2019 after practicing in New York and Florida. He is also a published surgeon and has lectured and taught around the world. Trident Health, which includes Trident Medical Center, Summerville Medical Center, Moncks Corner Medical Center and Centre Pointe Emergency, is celebrating the 11thyear of its minimally invasive robotic-assisted surgery program. Trident Health surgeons perform more robotic surgeries than any other hospital in South Carolina’s Lowcountry and is the state’s second busiest program. “Colorectal surgery is complex since it involves multiple quadrants in the abdomen, and you are working in the confines of a narrow pelvis,” said Dr. Santiago. “Patients want to maintain as much of their bodily functions as possible while treating the disease. My interest in finding a better, safer and patient-friendly surgical approach started more than a decade ago. “Minimally invasive robotic-assisted surgery provides many benefits to the patient that traditional surgery doesn’t. The benefits include less pain, better outcomes and shorter hospital stays. Over time I developed surgical techniques and designed equipment that help patients and the surgeons. It’s a very rewarding experience to give someone hope when they had lost it.” Dr. Santiago has taught surgeons in the US, South America, Asia, Canada, Australia and other countries. He also developed surgical techniques and equipment that set the standard of care for his specialty. Intuitive Surgical, the manufacturer of the da Vinci robot, has designated Dr. Santiago an Colorectal Robotic Epicenter. Criteria for Epicenter designation include performing more than 1,000 minimally invasive robotic-assisted surgeries; maintaining quality and patient safety outcomes; and teaching other surgeons. Dr. Santiago joins an all-star team of Trident Health surgeons who specialize in minimally invasive robotic-assisted surgery. Surgeons have performed more than 8,000 cases at Trident Medical Center and Summerville Medical Center. At Trident Health robotic surgery is being used for heart, lung, gynecologic, urologic, spine, hernia and other general surgery procedures.

(Pictured: (l-r) Visiting surgeon John Sayles, MD; Tess DeGuzman, RN, Surgical Services, Trident Medical Center; Cesar Santiago, MD, FACS, FASCRS, Trident Medical Center)

About Minimally Invasive Robotic-Assisted Surgery
Robotic surgery is a type of minimally invasive surgery. It is controlled completely by the surgeon. The technology includes a console and a tower. The consoleis where the surgeon sits and operates the robot’s controls while looking into a viewfinder that provides a magnified, high definition 3-D view of the surgical site. The surgeon manipulates the robot’s arms by maneuvering master controls that provide fingertip precision of movement. The tower, which is positioned directly over the patient during surgery, contains the robot’s arms. They hold a multitude of different surgical instruments and the system’s 3-D cameras. These arms are controlled by a computer that exactly replicates the movements of the operating surgeon.

About Trident Health
For more than 40 years staff and physicians at Trident Health have provided acute healthcare services to families in South Carolina’s Lowcountry.Services are provided through its two hospitals, Trident Medical Center and Summerville Medical Center; two freestanding emergency departments, Moncks Corner Medical Center and Centre Pointe Emergency; and two urgent care centers, CareNow Urgent Care Goose Creek and CareNow Urgent Care North Charleston.Both hospitals have received top ranking as Joint Commission Top Hospitals for Quality Performance and are Joint Commission Certified for Advanced Heart Failure and Advanced Primary Stroke Centers.Trident Health is one of the South Carolina Lowcountry’s largest employers with more than 2,500 employees and has a medical staff of nearly 500 physicians.In 2018 it provided $143.3 million in uncompensated care and paid $47.9 million in local, state and federal taxes.To learn more about how Trident Health is growing to meet the needs of our growing region and how to join our team go to