April 10, 2024
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Understanding Robotics – Part III

This is our third and, for the near future, the final article of our series on the advancement of robotics and spinal surgery. As our previous two articles mentioned, we as a group have given a major thumbs up toward the use of robotics in spinal surgery, as well as undergone considerable training in the field of robotics with a plan on advancing its usage in our day-to-day practice.  Prior to any major decision with regard to robotics, we felt appropriate to ask our spinal/orthopedic PA Isaac Abramchayev to give us the final word. I also think it is a good opportunity for us to introduce Isaac and his role at the Center for Musculoskeletal Disorders.

Isaac Abramchayev is a spinal/orthopedic PA. As such, he underwent a combination of undergraduate training, as well as specialized training as a physician assistant at St. John’s University PA program, after which he began working in the Northwell (formerly North Shore) system as an orthopedic PA. He quickly showed excellence, both in the area of clinical management but more specifically in the area of technical surgical prowess. This came in the form of successfully assisting on orthopedic cases such as hip fractures, as well as some of the original spinal cases done by our group within that institution. It became apparent that he possessed three major competitive edges. Number one, he had the ability as a physician assistant to scrub in or operate with multiple surgeons, and was able to quickly gain knowledge and surgical tips or techniques from the variety of surgeons whom he encountered. Second to that, we as a group, in noticing his desire to learn, began to utilize him more frequently in our practice surgeries. Lastly, similar to Betzalel in the construction of the Mishkan, he was granted significant technical and visual skills by Hashem. Due to that, over the past five years we decided to incorporate him within our practice. Currently all major surgeries, particularly those with significant technical difficulty, are done with and in conjunction with decision-making from Isaac.

When it came time to make further decisions on where to focus our time, energy and investment in regard to robotics, we wanted Isaac to personally evaluate the technology without bias from the other surgeons in the practice. With that in mind, he independently was sent to Mazor headquarters in Florida at their training grounds. After spending time at the symposium, Isaac had the following to say: “I had a great time visiting the headquarters last weekend. It was time well spent. The technology is innovative and forward thinking. The preoperative platform helps put the surgeon at ease about placement of metal hardware around very vital structures. The intraoperative hardware is precise and easy to apply into the normal routine. For too long, spinal surgery relied on estimation and guessing. Robotics is set to theoretically and practically change the way spinal surgery is approached from a surgical and perioperative team standpoint.”

So, ladies and gentleman, there you have it from Super PA Isaac Abramchayev. He is available both in our New York and New Jersey offices and, as a show of appreciation to the community, is willing to answer any questions that potential students wishing to engage in the profession of physician assistant may have. Please do not hesitate to reach out to us for a personal appointment with Isaac Abramchayev, both on a clinical and fact-finding basis.

The next publication in regard to robotics will hopefully be a formal announcement toward collaboration. Stay tuned—it’s an exciting time in the world of spinal health.

Dr. Jonathan Lewin is a board-certified orthopedic spinal surgeon at The Center for Spinal Disorders, providing services for back pain and spinal disorders. Dr. Lewin is one of the few doctors in the states of New York and New Jersey who is experienced in performing Endoscopic Fusion Surgery. He can be reached at The Center for Musculoskeletal Disorders 177 N. Dean St., Suite 301, Englewood, NJ 07631, (201)510-3777, www.NJSpinalDisorders.com  or [email protected].

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