As we continue to bring more and more physicians on board to be a part of the team at the Institute for Robotic Surgery, we continue to bring their perspective and medical philosophy to the public at large.
Today, we speak to Dr. Yitzhack Asulin, director of female pelvic reconstructive surgery and robotic surgery at Hudson Regional Hospital, who tells about the new robotic surgery program through the Institute for Robotic Surgery at HRH, what types of operations can be performed with this new robotic technology, and why Hudson Regional Hospital in general is such a popular facility for physicians around the tri-state area. Originally from Israel, he is an active member of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, American Urogynecologic Society and Society of Laparoendoscopic Surgeons.
My name is Yitzhack Asulin, and I’m the director of female pelvic reconstructive surgery and robotic surgery at Hudson Regional Hospital. I completed my training as an OB/GYN surgeon at Stamford Hospital in Connecticut.
I started doing robotic surgery approximately ten years ago, and I was one of the first surgeons in the country to complete 1,000 of these complex cases. Most of these surgeries have been completed in Northern New Jersey.
Robotic surgery is a relatively new surgical modality in gynecological surgery. It covers a wide range of gynecological surgeries from the most complex hysterectomies, myomectomies, pelvis reconstruction surgeries, to the minor cases that can be completed with the robot. The benefit of using robotic surgery for these cases is the fact that you can do all these cases with meticulous specificity, minimal incisions, and scarring. These are now same-day surgeries, compared to the “open” approach in the past where patients had to spend four to five days in the hospital.
Often, I’ll describe to patients that the amount of blood lost in surgery could be put in a teaspoon. There is virtually no blood loss during this surgery. Another great benefit is the minimal post-operative pain, which is minimal and much significantly reduced when compared to open cases. Many times patients can return to their regular activity within ten days as opposed to months when using open surgery. Also, patients who have had multiple complex abdomen surgeries are much easier to operate on with the da Vinci Xi Robotic Surgical System. The robot makes things much more clear.
As the director of female pelvic reconstructive surgery and robotic surgery at Hudson Regional Hospital, we have an excellent opportunity with the Institute for Robotic Surgery to provide the community with first-class gynecological surgery. We can provide the highest level of technology and the most up-to-date surgical modalities. Gone are the days of long recovery time. Everything you need is right here. We do have the most complex surgical system in the world. There is nothing better than the da Vinci Xi Robotic Surgical System. In Northern New Jersey, we don’t have a lot of options for robotic surgery. And the majority of cases in the US are done in an open, traditional approach. It’s only a matter of time before all complex cases will be completed with robotic surgery and I’m proud that the Institute for Robotic Surgery at Hudson Regional Hospital is leading the way in this regard. We are positioned to set an example and provide the highest quality of care.
The great benefit that patients experience at Hudson Regional Hospital, including the Institute for Robotic Surgery, is that they will receive personalized, one-on-one care. Our team is first class. We have an incredible team in the OR from the support team, to the nursing staff, to the surgeons operating. We are providing excellent medical care. It is no longer necessary for patients in our area to seek out more extensive medical facilities or hospitals in New York City. We do provide the highest level of one-on-one care. You are not a number on the board. We give people very close attention. We focus on the little things that make a difference at the end of the day.
At the Institute for Robotic Surgery, we are building this program which will attract many physicians in the area solely because they do not have access to the da Vinci robotic technology—even in larger hospitals. When it does exist, they are full programs, and it can prevent physicians from learning how to use the system and get comfortable. We provide exceptional training for surgeons, we recruit first-class physicians in other surgical specialties, and we have a team to support these people. The goal is always to have patients receive the best quality of care and be able to expand our menu of surgeries done with the da Vinci Xi Robotic Surgical System.
Yes, another great benefit of having this technology is that we can target specific populations of people in the area. For example, we can perform gynecological procedures for more obese patients. We can finally use minimally invasive surgeries to help these patients. This gives them a much lower rate of postoperative infections. It is both a much more effective and safer procedure. When comparing open surgery to robotic surgery, in my experience, robotic surgery is more reliable than open surgery. When I complete a complicated case where I expect a lot of blood loss, the patient bounces back much quicker than I initially would have thought. As a surgeon, I feel that I have full control of the situation when using robots for surgery.
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Dr. Jonathan Lewin is an alumnus of the Yeshiva College where he earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in 1989.
In 1993 he graduated from Albert Einstein College of Medicine with his Doctorate in Medicine. Between 1994 and 1998, Dr. Lewin completed his Orthopedic Surgery Residency at the Montefiore Medical Center. Following his residency, he also completed his Pediatric and Adult Medicine Surgery Fellowship at the Shriner’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Temple University Hospital, Cooper University, and Jefferson University Hospital.
Dr. Lewin is licensed to practice medicine in several states including New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania. He is currently a Diplomate of the American Board of Orthopedic Surgery and is the Director of Spine Surgery at North Shore University Hospital in Forest Hills, New York. 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.
Vagmin Vora, a native of Bombay, India, is an alumnus of Topiwala National Medical College – Bombay University, where he received his medical degree and of Sir J.J. Group of Hospitals – Bombay University where he completed his orthopedic surgery residency. His fellowships include: one in spine and scoliosis surgery at the Hospital for Special Surgery and Weil Medical College Cornell University in New York, NY and the other in pediatric orthopedics at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital and at Medical Centre in Ohio.
Dr. Vora has been a practicing spine surgeon since 2004 in India and in various locations in the U.S. He served as an attending spine surgeon at Penn State Hershey Medical Center and as an assistant professor of orthopedics at Penn State University College of Medicine in Hershey, PA.
He was most recently in private practice in York, PA, and Oxon Hill, MD. Dr. Vora is licensed to practice in several states, including Pennsylvania, Michigan, New York, New Jersey and Maryland as well as the District of Columbia.
Board-certified and fellowship-trained, Dr. Gbolahan Okubadejo specializes in the treatment of degenerative spinal disease, spinal deformity, and cervical, lumbar, and thoracic conditions.
Dr. Okubadejo earned his undergraduate degree at Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island, and his medical degree at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore.
He completed his internship and orthopedic surgery residency at Barnes-Jewish Hospital at the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. Dr. Okubadejo completed a spinal surgery fellowship at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center in Pittsburgh.
Dr. Okubadejo is a published research author and has presented his findings at several major spinal conferences around the globe. While a surgical resident, he won the Leonard Marmor Surgical Arthritis Foundation Resident Award for the best research project.
Dr. Okubadejo believes in the power of preventive care, minimally invasive surgical procedures, open communication with patients, and personalized care. When he’s not caring for patients, he enjoys traveling, learning about different cultures and the arts, and playing golf.
Dr. Seth A. Grossman is a board certified, fellowship trained orthopedic spine surgeon specializing in the treatment of disorders of the spine. Dr. Grossman is an alumnus of Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, where he received his Bachelor of Science in Computer Science with Magna Cum Laude honors. He went on to complete a Master of Science in Computer & Systems Engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, NY. He received his medical degree from Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia. He did his residency in Orthopaedic Surgery at Montefiore Medical Center, the University Hospital for the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York. He did a fellowship in Spine Surgery at the University of California at San Diego Medical Center.
He was a member of the Orlin & Cohen Orthopedic Group on Long Island, NY, where he specialized in both nonsurgical and surgical management of spinal disorders, including minimally invasive spine surgery, degenerative disease, deformity/scoliosis, and trauma. While there, he did a high volume of XLIF (eXtreme Lateral Interbody Fusion) MIS TLIF (Minimally Invasive SpineTransforaminal Lumbar Interbody Fusion) Percutaneous fixation Cervical disc arthroplasty Tubular microdiscectomy Revision surgery Dr. Grossman is board certified in orthopedic surgery and licensed to practice medicine in New York and New Jersey. Prior to his tenure as a spine surgeon, he also worked for General Electric’s Global Research Center as a computer scientist and the Biomedical Imaging Center / Robert Wood Johnson, UMDNJ. Dr. Grossman has conducted numerous research projects in his field, and co-authored articles for spine and orthopedic medical journals.
Dr. Harris is a fellowship-trained, board certified orthopedic surgeon specializing in all aspects of spine care and spine surgery. He has specific interest in spinal deformity, the previously operated spine, cervical spine surgery, and minimally invasive spine surgery. He is a graduate of Columbia University and New York Medical College as well as the UMDNJ – New Jersey Medical School orthopedic residency program at University Hospital, Newark, NJ. He has completed fellowship training in spine surgery at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago, IL, under the direction of Dr. Howard S. An, and was previously in private practice in Syracuse, NY, for over 5 years before returning to Rutgers.
He was selected to the Alpha Omega Alpha medical honor society at New York Medical College and holds an active membership in multiple societies including the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, the North American Spine Society, the Society of Lateral Access Surgery, and the American Medical Association.
Certification: American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery – Orthopaedic Surgery
Dr. Bitan is a world-renowned spine surgeon and leading expert in spinal instrumentation. He has substantial experience in treating spinal deformities, especially scoliosis and kyphosis, in Europe and the United States. His areas of expertise include treating spinal deformities, performing artificial disc replacement, and operating minimally invasive spinal procedures.
Dr. Rovner achieved his medical degree from New York Downstate College of Medicine. From there, he completed his residency in orthopaedic surgery at Albert Einstein College of Medicine and a prestigious spine fellowship at the Twin Cities Spine Center in Minneapolis. He is board-certified in orthopaedic surgery with a practice specialization in spine surgery.
Since establishing his practice in Englewood, NJ, Dr. Rovner has earned a reputation for delivering cutting-edge, minimally-invasive spine surgeries. These advanced techniques are associated with a number of important patient benefits, including less blood loss, reduced risks, a faster recovery and less post-operative pain. In addition, Dr. Rovner is one of a handful of spine specialists in New Jersey qualified to perform robotic procedures. As such, it is easy to see why he is regarded as a top spine surgeon New Jersey has to offer.
Beyond his technical expertise and commitment to continued leadership of his field in innovation and skill, Dr. Rovner is known among his clients for his compassionate approach to patient care. He knows that back surgery is scary, and he does everything within his power to put his clients at ease and assure them that they are in experienced, highly capable hands
Dr. Ashraf is a compassionate and insightful board-certified orthopedic surgeon and sports medicine specialist caring for the community of Greater New York City.
Dr. Ashraf completed his internship at New York Medical College/St. Vincent’s Hospital in New York City, and completed his residency in orthopedic surgery at Lenox Hill Hospital, New York. Afterward, he went on to complete a fellowship in orthopedic sports medicine at the University of Miami. There, Dr. Ashraf served as a team physician for the Major league baseball team, “Miami Marlins”, University of Miami Athletics “The Hurricanes”, and US Sailing.
Dr. Ashraf received the Ranawat Annual Research Award for the best resident research study for his latest research study, “Use of stem cells and PRP on ligament healing” which was presented at the Annual Meeting of American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgery, in 2015.
“I believe that I can relate to my patients, as I practice what I preach. I am helping patients to get back to living a healthier and active lifestyle. I do understand that injuries are a part of being active and have suffered and worked through several injuries myself over the years”. Outside of his practice, he enjoys running, weightlifting, nutrition, and yoga.
Dr. Ashraf is sensitive to the uniqueness of each patient’s situation and adapts his consultations and treatment options appropriately to accommodate individual needs and concerns.
Dr. Amit Sood specializes in the comprehensive management of all disorders involving the shoulder utilizing shoulder arthroscopy, reconstruction, and replacement. He has received advanced training in the United States and France on total and reverse shoulder replacement surgery through his fellowship at Harvard and brings his expertise to Bergen County, NJ. Dr. Sood has also authored multiple research publications and book chapters in the orthopedic literature and is a fellow of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (FAAOS). In addition to comprehensive management of the shoulder, Dr. Sood also treats conditions involving the hand, wrist, hip, knee, foot, and ankle. Treatments include trauma/fracture care, sports treatment/arthroscopy, and joint replacement surgery.
Dr. Stefanie Vaimakis is a general surgeon in Teaneck, New Jersey. She received her medical degree from NYU School of Medicine and has been in practice for more than 20 years. She specializes in Bariatric Surgery.
Dr. Paul Rothenberg, M.D. is a fellowship-trained orthopedic surgeon who specializes in the operative and non-operative treatment of sports-related injuries of the shoulder, elbow, knee, and ankle. His expertise includes minimally invasive arthroscopic surgery, cartilage restoration/preservation, and shoulder replacement surgery. Dr. Rothenberg understands the burden of injury on an active lifestyle. His passion is restoring his patients’ lifestyles by returning them to their favorite activities.
Daniel J. Rosen, MD – A Cornell Graduate, born in Brooklyn, Dr. Rosen is a fellowship-trained general surgeon who completed a dual specialty in laparoscopic and bariatric surgery. He received his medical degree from Albert Einstein College of Medicine, trained in general surgery at St. Luke’s – Roosevelt Hospital Center, and completed fellowship training at New York-Presbyterian Hospitals, Columbia University Medical Center and Cornell campus.
He was voted #1 most compassionate doctor by Vitals.com. As a general surgeon, he regularly performs minimally invasive surgery specializing in abdominal procedures such as hernia repairs, gallbladder removals, and anti-reflux surgery. Minimally invasive surgery uses cameras and tiny skin incisions to avoid large scars. The types of hernia surgery he treats include groin hernia repair, sports hernia repair, and hiatal hernia repair.
He has performed over 200 weight loss procedures including adjustable gastric banding (the Lap-Band), sleeve gastrectomy, gastric bypass, duodenal switch, and revisional bariatric operations. Dr. Rosen is certified by the American Board of Surgery and is a member of the American Society of Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS), and the Society of American Gastrointestinal Endoscopic Surgeons (SAGES). His research has been published in leading surgical journals and is the recipient of multiple awards and recognitions. He also does Botox/Dysport and Derma Fillers.
Dr. Miglietta is the Director of Surgery at Hudson Regional Hospital. He is board-certified in General Surgery and Surgical Critical Care.
Dr. Miglietta graduated from Rutgers University and received a degree of Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine at New York College of Osteopathic Medicine of the NYIT. He did his General Surgery residency at St. Barnabas Hospital in New York.
He is a very well known surgeon and brings broad experience and extensive surgical expertise. He is a Professor of Surgery and Regional Dean at Touro College of Osteopathic Medicine and Assistant Professor of Surgery at Mount Sinai School of Medicine. Dr. Miglietta served as the Director of Medical Education and Program Director of a General Surgery residency program at Palisades Medical Center for over 6 years of training of future physicians and surgeons. Dr. Miglietta authored a number of scientific and medical publications and is a member of several scientific societies. Dr. Miglietta is fluent in Italian and speaks medical Spanish.
Dr. Robert A. Kayal is the Founder, President, and CEO of Kayal Orthopaedic Center, PC. Dr. Kayal considers it an honor, blessing, and privilege to help restore an active lifestyle and joyful life to each of his patients. He gives all his thanks to God for his talents and skills and prays his practice will always be used to honor and glorify God.
“What you’ll find here isn’t just state-of-the-art facilities. It’s an entire philosophy,” says Dr. Kayal. With New Jersey locations in Franklin Lakes, Glen Rock, Westwood, Paramus, and soon-to-be Montvale and an additional center in Stony Point, New York, the award-winning practice prides itself on offering advanced orthopedic treatments in a compassionate environment. As a patient, “you aren’t just a number,” says Dr. Kayal. “We’re focused on building lifelong relationships, accelerating rehabilitation, and inspiring quality of life.”
Specializing in partial and total joint replacements as well as sports medicine and arthroscopy, Dr. Kayal knows the importance of staying abreast of the latest technologies. By keeping his finger on the pulse of innovation, he can provide beneficial treatments to help patients recover quickly. “I use cutting-edge advancements in customized total knee replacement surgery that utilizes high-resolution MRI technology to create a 3D blueprint of the patient’s arthritic knee. Proprietary software removes all of the arthritis from the joint and sizes, shapes, aligns, and perfectly fits a new knee in its place. Then, 3D printing is used to create customized Patient Specific Instrumentation, which is shipped to the operating room and sterilized for my use,” says Dr. Kayal. “This state-of-the-art technology allows me to perform a virtual knee replacement in advance of surgery and create a new knee that’s customized specifically to a patient’s body.”
Besides the Kayal Orthopaedic Center, Dr. Kayal’s practice includes the Kayal Pain & Spine Center, Kayal Rheumatology Center, Kayal Physical Therapy, Kayal Osteoporosis Center, and the Kayal Medical Imaging Center. These facilities allow him to provide a wider range of musculoskeletal treatments and therapies. “I believe our patients do their homework and choose this practice because of our training, skill, experience, and innovation,” Dr. Kayal says. “But what they also find from us is patience, compassion, and a genuine concern and commitment to each and every one of them.”
Dr. Kadimcherla has extensive knowledge of various pathologies involving the degenerative spine. He has become adept in dealing with complex spine issues including deformity, tumors, and revision spine surgery. He has published scientific articles and presented at national meetings.
His current research interests include investigating the use of an Ultrasonic Bone Scalpel to improve the results of common spine surgery procedures, analyzing practice patterns of fusion, and treatment of degenerative spondylolisthesis by spine surgeons across the country.
Dr. Kadimcherla attended New England Baptist Hospital, Tufts University School of Medicine, Boston, MA where he attended a fellowship in Orthopaedic and Neurosurgery Spine. Prior to that, he completed his Residency in Orthopaedics at Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, NY, and earned his medical degree at University at Buffalo School of Medicine, Buffalo, NY. He is a member of the AMA and several honor societies.
Dr. Johnson specializes in sports medicine and post-traumatic joint and soft tissue injuries, with a focus on arthroscopic, minimally-invasive surgical treatments of injuries to the shoulder, knee, hip, and elbow. He uses the latest technology and regenerative therapies as indicated to perform each treatment, including cartilage and ligament reconstruction and repair, in order to restore patients to their pre-injury active lifestyles as quickly as possible. Dr. Johnson wants his patients to stay active and keep moving, and he continually trains on the latest therapies and techniques to help his patients do exactly that. Active in his community and an avid cyclist, Dr. Johnson is also a patron of Jazz at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts.
Dr. Luis C. Grau is a fellowship-trained orthopedic surgeon who specializes in the non-operative and operative treatment of orthopedic conditions of the Hip and Knee. Dr. Grau’s clinical interest includes minimally invasive surgical techniques which help promote more rapid recovery. He has advanced training in arthroscopy, direct anterior hip replacement, quad-sparing partial and total knee replacement, and is an expert in robotic-arm assisted and computer navigated partial and total joint replacement. Dr. Grau believes in advancing the field of joint reconstruction and has authored numerous scientific articles in peer-reviewed journals, presented his research about both national and international meetings and serves on the editorial board of The American Journal of Orthopaedics.
Dr. Grau was born in Havana, Cuba, and grew up in Miami, Florida. He followed in his father’s footsteps who is also an Orthopaedic Surgeon and studied pre-medicine at the University of Miami where he was accepted on an academic scholarship and as a member of the Honors College. He went on to graduate with high honors and was inducted into the Golden Key Honor Society. Dr. Grau then moved to Chicago to complete his medical school where he was recruited and awarded an academic scholarship by the Hispanic Center of Excellence. In medical school, he was voted president of his class and graduated as a member of the prestigious AOA medical honor society awarded to the top students in each class.
Following medical school, Dr. Grau was selected to complete his residency at the University of Miami Department of Orthopaedics, one of the busiest and most well-recognized residency programs in the country. While in residency he had extensive training in level I orthopedic trauma, arthroscopy, sports medicine and participated in the orthopedic care of the Miami Marlins and the University of Miami Athletics. He was then selected to complete an additional one-year joint replacement fellowship at the Rothman Institute where he performed over 1000 joint replacements with leaders in the field.
Dr. Grau’s practice philosophy is to always start simple and to treat his patients like he would his own family.
Dr. Jason M. Gallina, MD is an orthopedic and spine surgeon. He graduated from UMDNJ in 2002. Dr. Gallina completed his residency in orthopedic surgery in 2007 at Mount Sinai (St. Luke’s-Roosevelt Hospital Center) and completed his fellowship in spine surgery at St. John’s Hospital & Health Center in 2008. He is board-certified by the American Board of Orthopedic Surgery.
Approximately 10 years ago with the introduction and breakthrough of robotic surgery in the United States, Dr. Asulin became one of the first surgeons in the country to embrace robotic surgical technology and became one of the pioneers and leaders in gynecologic minimally invasive and robotic surgery.
Dr. Asulin is a leader in minimally invasive surgical techniques and one of the region’s most experienced gynecologic robotic surgeons who has taught extensively in the area of robotic surgery throughout the country.
Dr. Alexandra Carrer is a spine orthopedic surgeon who has been 5 years in practice and was recruited to join Dr. Frazier at New York City Spine Surgery because of her surgical skills and her dedicated patient care.
After graduating with honors at the French Lycee of Madrid in Spain, Dr. Carrer graduated cum laude in Film and Television and with outstanding academic achievement in biophysics from the University of Southern California. Dr. Carrer completed medical school and residency at the State University of New York Downstate College of Medicine where she excelled through her research and publications.
During her busy surgical residency, Dr. Carrer found the time to develop one of the first surgical skills anatomy laboratories in the city for resident and student education to promote excellence in surgical technique, a trend that is now becoming the standard of training in US medical teaching institutions. Dr. Carrer did her fellowship training in spine surgery at the University of California-San Francisco with some of the world’s most renowned spine surgeons. Here, she perfects her surgical skills and contributed numerous research papers.
Dr. Carrer has attended numerous national and international meetings presenting her research and is an active member of the spine community. As a competitive martial artist in Taekwondo and Wushu in her youth and a weekend athlete warrior now, Dr. Carrer, has also focused on the non-operative treatment of orthopedic and spinal disorders and guides patients not only through the treatment of present ailments but through prevention of future degenerative conditions associated with activity and aging. Dr. Carrer treats patients individually and integrates multimodal treatments to maximize a rapid functional recovery. Dr. Carrer’s scope of practice encompasses the management of degenerative, traumatic, and deformity–related conditions of the cervical, thoracic and lumbosacral spine.
Dr. Carrer’s surgical expertise focuses on minimally invasive techniques, lateral approaches, trans-sacral and endoscopic procedures, and motion preservation. In particular, along with her partner Dr. Frazier, founder of New York City Spine, she is developing minimally surgical techniques for the treatment of failed back syndrome and revision spine surgery, so that patients with prior failed back or neck surgery can experience a fast recovery with minimal downtime and complications.