Robotic & Minimally Invasive Surgery


The Foregut Team offers robotic-assisted surgery for a variety of tumor types of the chest and abdomen. The robotic surgery platform is designed to overcome the limitations of both open and traditional laparoscopic surgery by giving surgeons magnified stereoscopic vision and the ability to work within confined spaces. In addition, robotic-assisted procedures are associated with reduced need for oral pain medications and shorter length of hospitalization.  The surgeons of the NIH Foregut Team work with patients to select a surgical treatment and determine whether robotic surgery is right for them.

Robotic surgery for foregut cancers at NIH was initiated by Dr. R. Taylor Ripley in collaboration with anesthesiologists, thoracic nursing team leaders, and a surgical technologist in June 2015. The thoracic robotics program was introduced first to treat tumors of the esophagus, lung, mediastinum, chest wall, and diaphragm.  Soon after, the robotic surgery program was expanded by Dr. Jeremy L. Davis to treat abdominal tumors including the stomach, pancreas, liver, colon, and rectum. 

Both Dr. Ripley and Dr. Davis received advanced training in robotic surgery at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center.  As part of the multi-disciplinary NIH Foregut Team, robotic surgery is a complex surgical treatment option offered in the setting of innovative clinical cancer research. 

Robotic surgical procedures offered by surgeons of the NIH Foregut Team include:

  • Esophageal surgery
  • Gastric (stomach) surgery
  • Pancreatic surgery
  • Liver surgery
  • Colon and Rectal surgery

Special training and experience allow our team to care for patients throughout the course of their treatment and recovery at NIH. The robotic surgery team integrates the pre-operative, intra-operative and post-operative expertise provided by all disciplines. Our team of anesthesiologists, surgeons, operating room nurses and nurse practitioners provide patients with the highest quality surgery and post-operative care to ensure that patient safety is the most paramount aspect of this program.

To learn more about robotic surgery offered by the NIH Foregut Team, please contact us at:

foregut@mail.nih.gov