Inside the Airways

Feel Good Magazine     Spring 2021

A new tool at Premier Health’s Miami Valley Hospital holds promise to fight lung cancer with earlier diagnosis and treatment. The Monarch™ Platform for robotic bronchoscopy gives pulmonary specialists the ability to navigate and search delicate, distant branches of the lung and retrieve tissue samples for biopsy from hard-to-reach nodules.

Miami Valley Hospital is the first in Ohio to use the Monarch™ Platform, which integrates advancements in robotics, software, data science, and endoscopy (the use of small cameras and tools to enter the body through its natural openings).

A Potential For Earlier Diagnosis

“We’re excited about this technology’s promise to offer a more hopeful future for our patients with lung cancer in the Miami Valley,” says Soumitra Sen, MD, of Pulmonary & Critical Care Consultants, Inc. and section chief of pulmonary critical care at Miami Valley Hospital. “As lung cancer screening increases, we are discovering more lung nodules, and many tend to be smaller and in more difficult areas to reach. This makes early-stage diagnosis challenging.”

Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer deaths worldwide, in part because it has no symptoms in its early stages. The American Cancer Society projects more than 235,000 new cases of lung cancer, and 131,800 deaths from the disease in 2021.

“The Monarch™ Platform provides improved reach, vision, and control for viewing the inside of the airways and holds potential to help us make a diagnosis earlier,” explains Jose Rodriguez, MD, FACS, system director of thoracic surgery at Premier Health and certified physician with MD Anderson Cancer Network®. “It’s another example of our commitment to bring advanced technology — along with compassionate care — to the ongoing battle against cancer.”

Combining traditional endoscopic views into the lung with computer-assisted navigation based on 3D models of the patient’s own lung anatomy, the Monarch™ Platform provides physicians with continuous bronchoscope vision throughout the entire procedure.

Supporting Advances In Treatment

Funds for the Monarch™ Platform’s purchase were raised by the Miami Valley Hospital Foundation.

“Miami Valley Hospital is proud to make this new diagnostic option available to our patients,” says Jenny Lewis, president of the Miami Valley Hospital and Good Samaritan Foundations. “We are grateful to our dedicated donors for their continuing support of important initiatives that benefit our patients and community.”

Premier Health is a certified member of MD Anderson Cancer Network®, a program of MD Anderson Cancer Center.

Back to the Spring 2021 issue of Feel Good magazine.