Earlier this year, the first single-site robotic general surgery in North Mississippi was performed at OCHRegionalMedicalCenter, and now two more OCH surgeons have been trained to offer this unique service at the MedicalCenter.     

            Board certified general surgeons Roger Clapp, MD, FACS, and Daniel Smith, MD, have both completed extensive training and join Daryl Guest, MD, in performing single-site robotic general surgery at OCH.  This cutting-edge technology using the da Vinci SI Surgical System has changed the face of general surgery.  Instead of several incisions, the surgeon operates through one tiny incision using robotic assistance, which typically means patients experience less pain and are back to normal activities much faster.

            After years of stomach pain and nausea that progressively worsened, Sara Watkins opted to undergo single site robotic surgery to remove her gallbladder.  “I made an appointment with Dr. Parsons in Ackerman after having yet another night of horrible stomach pain.  I’ve seen several physicians before who dismissed my symptoms and would send me home with a prescription of Nexium for heartburn and indigestion, but Dr. Parsons took time and listened to me,” said Watkins.  “He ordered an ultrasound on my gallbladder and even went one step further and ordered a HIDA Scan which showed my gallbladder wasn’t functioning properly,” she explained. 

            Watkins made an appointment with general surgeon Dr. Roger Clapp in Starkville who explained single site robotic general surgery to her.  “Neither single site nor robotic surgery is new, but combining the two is what makes this procedure so advanced and beneficial to the patient,” explained Dr. Clapp.  “This technology allows the surgeon to utilize superior video quality and more precise maneuvers through one very small incision.  Patients usually experience less pain, a quicker recovery and better cosmetic results.  It’s very exciting to be on the forefront and be a leader in using this advanced surgical technology for the benefit of my patients,” he added.

            After having the surgery performed by Dr. Clapp at OCH, Watkins was very pleased. “I am so glad I had this surgery because I feel so much better!  The incision was literally in my belly button.  I had a little tenderness and swelling, which would’ve been much worse if I had chosen to have multiple incisions,” said Watkins.

            Dr. Daniel Smith has also undergone extensive training to provide single site robotic general surgery at OCH.  In fact, last November, Dr. Smith was the first general surgeon in North Mississippi to perform a robotic operation.   

            “The single site approach adds to the technology of the robot allowing us to perform complex operations through one very small incision.  Having the most advanced robot positions OCH to be on the cutting edge of technology and allows us to provide the very best option for our patients,” said Dr. Smith.

            Dr. Smith performed the single site surgery on Linda Dendy from Woodland and in less than two weeks, she was painting her house and enjoying good food with her family on the Fourth of July.  “If you can like surgery, I liked it.  I’ve had other surgeries, and this one was much easier to recuperate from with much less pain,” said Dendy.  “Everything was perfect! Two of my daughter-in-laws have had babies at OCH, and I had my last child there 26 years ago.  The hospital was great then, and it’s only improved since,” she added.

            Watkins said she’s thankful single site robotic surgery is available at OCH.  “I live in Louisville and could’ve gone to Jackson or Meridian to have this surgery, but because of OCH, I was able to stay close to home to have the most advanced procedure and not have a long drive home after surgery,” said Watkins.  “OCH is up-to-date on procedures and has plenty of resources, so I felt secure that if anything went wrong, they could handle the situation. And with the new renovations, I felt like I was at home instead of a hospital!  Everything was just so nice and soothing and peaceful during my recovery hours.  I couldn’t have had a better experience,” Watkins added.

            For more information about surgical services offered at OCH, visit och.org and look under “Our Services.”  For an appointment with Dr. Smith, contact OCH General Surgery Associates at (662) 615-3781.  For an appointment with Dr. Clapp, contact him at (662) 324-1310. 


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