Hospital Links

Minimally Invasive Robotic Surgery at Fort Sanders Regional Medical Center

robotic surgery machine

Robotic-Assisted Surgery: Same Skilled Surgeons, Newest Technology

In 2004, Fort Sanders Regional Medical Center was the first to introduce the robotics system to East Tennessee, and we’ve added more robots to our surgical team.

If you need surgery, Fort Sanders Regional provides you with more options, including minimally invasive and robotic-assisted procedures.

What is Robotic-Assisted Surgery?

Robotic-assisted surgery is minimally invasive and highly effective alternative to some traditional surgery. Combined with the skills of our surgeons, this computer-based technology enhances your healing and well-being after surgery.

There are different types of surgical robots that can be used in a wide variety of surgical procedures — everything from joint replacements to hysterectomies.

With this innovative technology, a surgeon uses a robotic arm to manipulate hand controls to perform your operation while viewing 3D, high-resolution images on a computer screen. The high-resolution cameras and micro-surgical instruments are powered by state-of-the-art robotic technology. 

However, technology can never replace the experience of our skilled surgical team. The surgical robotics system is completely under the surgeon’s control and replicates the surgeon’s movements in real time. It cannot be programmed or make decisions on its own.

Robotic-assisted surgery is precise and minimally invasive, and is a highly effective alternative to some traditional surgery. Combined with the skills of our surgeons, this computer-based technology enhances the healing and well-being of our surgical patients.

How Can You Benefit from Robotic Surgery?

  • Your surgeon can make fine, quick movements, enabling more intricate procedures.
  • You experience less damage to healthy tissue.
  • You will likely experience less pain, less blood loss, and faster post-operative recovery.
  • The method allows for smaller incisions, reducing your risk of infection and causing minimal scarring.
  • Robotic-assisted surgery provides a better overall outcome, allowing you to return to daily activities more quickly.

Services Available at Fort Sanders Regional Medical Center

Robotic-assisted surgeries at Fort Sanders include many procedures in the following specialties:

Patient Success Stories

Tending to Her Health

Sevierville woman is back in the garden after robotic-assisted esophageal surgery

Jean Beam was referred to Fort Sanders Regional Medical Center board-certified general surgeon Michael Antiporda, MD. With Dr. Antiporda’s guidance, Beam decided to treat her hiatal hernia through robotic-assisted surgery. “Dr. Antiporda said from the outside it looks like you didn’t have much done, but on the inside you had a whole lot done! It’s kind of amazing, really. My recovery was so quick. I had to force myself to wait to do things. He said to wait two months before I could do heavy lifting and pull weeds,” Beam says.

Third Time’s a Charm

Man’s third hernia repair is the easiest, thanks to robotic assistance

In June 2020,  Frank Hamner had robotic‐assisted surgery, performed by Michael Antiporda, MD, at Fort Sanders Regional Medical Center. “I’m just amazed by the advances that have been made since my first hernia surgery,” Hamner says. “With the first one, it was an open surgery. The recovery time was much longer, and I had a great deal more pain. The second one, not so much pain. And this third time? I expected it to be a little better, but I was shocked at how easy the recovery was.”


Fort Sanders Regional Medical Center

  • Hospital
  • Laboratory
  • Emergency Room

Covenant Health