Madeline Stokes – da Vinci Single-Site Gallbladder Surgery Success Story

Da Vinci for the goal!

“The recovery time was amazing,” she says. “I only needed mild pain medication for a couple of days and was back to my workouts in a month.

In August 2014, when Madeline Stokes took the field for her junior year on the Centenary College soccer team, she couldn’t believe how great she felt.

“We have two-a-day practices, and usually I would have some kind of issue with my stomach that kept me from performing my best that day,” the 21-year-old Dallas native says. “But that season, I didn’t feel uncomfortable during my practices and games, and I didn’t need bathroom and water breaks as often. My coach even noticed the difference.”

The difference was the robotic da Vinci® Surgical System.

Being heard, being helped

Madeline had struggled for years with stomach problems: shooting pains, chronic nausea, heartburn. Other doctors had brushed it off as irritable bowel syndrome, but Madeline knew there was more to the problems. So last summer, when Ramsey Stone, MD, general surgeon on the medical staff at Methodist Richardson Medical Center, diagnosed her with an inflamed gallbladder, Madeline was relieved to finally have an answer.

“Dr. Stone actually listened to what I was saying and trusted me as a patient,” she says.

The surgeon scheduled a Single-Site® gallbladder removal with the da Vinci robot just a couple weeks later.

Fast healing

The main benefit of Single-Site is that it requires only one incision, usually through or near the patient’s belly button.

“The cosmetic result is minimal scarring, because there is one incision instead of four,” says Dr. Stone, who has eight years’ experience working with da Vinci. “We also see that most people experience less pain and return to work and activity faster.”

That was the goal for Madeline, who had a nursing internship and part-time job that summer, not to mention a 2014 soccer season to get ready for.

“The recovery time was amazing,” she says. “I only needed mild pain medication for a couple of days and was back to my workouts in a month. With an open procedure, it would have taken even longer to get back to my training. And its remarkable how little scarring I have. You can’t even see it.”

As she gets ready for her senior year and the 2015 season, she can trust that stomach pain won’t be holding her back.