Silver Cross Hospital

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1 of only 4 Hospitals in Midwest performing single-incision robotic surgery for women 

New Lenox, IL (May 13, 2013)—Today, Dr. Nahla Merhi performed a hysterectomy through one tiny incision in the belly button using a robot.  This new, innovative procedure called Single-Site™ Hysterectomy is currently only available at 15 hospitals throughout the country including the new Silver Cross Hospital in New Lenox.  Silver Cross is one of only four hospitals in the entire Midwest where skilled surgeons are using the robotic surgery to perform hysterectomies through a single incision with virtually scarless results.

Photo caption:  Dr. Nahla Merhi, co-director of the Center of Excellence for Minimally Invasive Gynecology at Silver Cross Hospital, performed the first single-incision hysterectomy using robotic surgery on Colleen O’Hara of New Lenox on May 13.  Silver Cross is one of only 15 hospitals in the nation offering this procedure with virtually scarless results.

“Neither robotic surgery nor single-incision surgery is new, but combining the two to perform a hysterectomy requires additional training and special equipment,” says Dr. Merhi, Co-Director of the Center of Excellence for Minimally Invasive Gynecology at Silver Cross Hospital. “To be one of the first hospitals in the U.S. to offer this technically advanced surgery demonstrates Silver Cross’ leadership in providing women with the most up-to-date minimally invasive surgical options.”

Dr. Nahla Merhi is one of a small group of gynecologists in the country who has received training to perform the surgery. She has performed over 200 hysterectomies using the robot and is the first physician on staff at Silver Cross Hospital to perform the Single-Site Hysterectomy procedure.

Single-Site instruments are the next step in the evolution of surgical technologies,” Dr. Merhi said. “We are truly excited to be a leader today in the surgical treatment of tomorrow.”

Minimal Scarring—Faster Recovery

For most women, Single-Site hysterectomy offers virtually scarless results, minimal pain, low blood loss, fast recovery, a short hospital stay and high patient satisfaction. The surgery can be performed in about one hour with a typical hospital stay of less than 24 hours. 

During the procedure, the surgeon sits comfortably at a console, viewing a 3D, high-definition image of the patient’s anatomy. The surgeon uses controls below the viewer to move the instrument arms and camera. In real-time, the system translates the surgeon's hand, wrist and finger movements into more precise movements of the miniaturized instruments inside the patient. 

Unlike traditional robotic surgeries requiring three to five small incisions, this new technology allows for a single incision in the belly button.  Here, instruments are placed to treat chronic pain, heavy bleeding, non-cancerous fibroids, endometriosis, and prolapse by surgically removing the uterus, know as a hysterectomy.

Many women who require a hysterectomy are candidates for the robotic, single-incision surgery. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, hysterectomy is the second most common surgical procedure for women in the United States, and an estimated one-third of all women will have a hysterectomy by age 60.

Advanced Robotic Procedures in a New Hospital

In addition to Single-Site Hysterectomy, Silver Cross Hospital offers various types of robotic-assisted surgeries including Single-Site Cholecystectomy (gallbladder removal).  Since April 2012, 20 physicians on staff have performed nearly 400 robotic-assisted surgeries for urology, colorectal, digestive and gynecological diseases. 

In November, Silver Cross was recently designated as a Center of Excellence in Minimally Invasive Gynecology (COEMIG) by the AAGL, the leading association of minimally invasive gynecologic surgeons worldwide, and Surgical Review Corporation (SRC).  Achieving the COEMIG designation signifies the Hospital’s ability to consistently deliver the safest, most advanced and comprehensive gynecologic surgical services to women across the region in a new, state-of-the-art 289 bed facility.  These patients are cared for in the Silver Cross Procedural Care Unit (PCU). The PCU is equipped with 11 state-of-the-art surgical suites specially designed for minimally invasive procedures, private pre and post procedure patient rooms, and a spacious lounge for family and friends.  

For a referral to a physician who performs Single-Site Hysterectomy or other robotic surgeries, call 1-888-660-HEAL (4325) or visit

About Silver Cross Hospital

Silver Cross Hospital is a not-for-profit health care provider serving Will County and southwest suburban communities since 1895. Silver Cross has been recognized as a Thomson Reuters 100 Top Hospitals National Award winner for seven consecutive years and as a Hospital of Choice by the American Alliance of Healthcare Providers. With over 3,000 employees, physicians and volunteers, Silver Cross operates a 289-bed acute care hospital and 9 satellite facilities providing outpatient services and physician offices. Silver Cross opened a state-of-the-art replacement hospital on February 26, 2012 at I-355 and Route 6 in New Lenox. To learn more about Silver Cross Hospital or a referral to a physician on staff, visit or call 1-888-660-HEAL (4325).

Located at 1900 Silver Cross Blvd., New Lenox, IL 60451   Main Phone (815) 300-1100

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Physicians on Silver Cross Hospital’s Medical Staff have expertise in their areas of practice to meet the needs of patients seeking their care.  These physicians are independent practitioners on the Medical Staff and are not the agents or employees of Silver Cross Hospital. They treat patients based upon their independent medical judgment and they bill patients separately for their services.