Tag Archives: surgery

da Vinci Robotic Surgery

Door County Medical Center is one of the top 20 critical access hospitals in the nation. More than a hospital, Door County Medical Center is an integrated health system providing the residents of Door and Kewaunee counties with state of the art technology and procedures, and top physicians.

There are 4 big ways Door County Medical Center brings state of the art technology to our community. #1 is da Vinci Robotic Surgery.

The da Vinci Surgical System is an advanced, robotic computer that uses 3-D technologies to assist your surgeon with an operation. It has been safely utilized by skilled surgeons since 2000, but not every hospital offers this state of the art technology. Earlier this year, Door County Medical hired Dr. St. Jean, whose practice includes all aspects of Minimally Invasive Surgery, endoscopy and robotic surgery. He brings years of experience with advanced robotic surgery to DCMC.

da Vinci Surgical System

“It’s the latest in advance robotic-assisted surgery and in minimally invasive procedures,” says Dr. St. Jean, “The da Vinci Xi makes it possible for surgeons to perform complex operations through small incisions—operations, which would otherwise require large incisions and long recuperation times.” The first “baptismal patient” to utilize daVinci assisted surgery for colon resection was home in two days, “I hate to jinx it, but it went very well,” says Dr. St. Jean.

da Vinci Surgical SystemThe robot’s mechanical wrists bend and rotate inside your body more effectively than a human wrist, resulting in a less invasive surgery. The surgeon is 100% in control of the robotic-assisted arms, which translates his/her hand movements into smaller, more precise movements of tiny instruments inside your body. The 3D-HD vision system provides surgeons a highly magnified view, virtually extending their eyes and hands into the patient.

Additionally, Dr. St. Jean points out that robotic-assisted surgery results in “decreased post-op pain. It gets the patient back to normal faster. Now that DCMC has one of these machines, Door County residents won’t have to travel to a major city for one of these procedures—we’re bringing the technological forefront to Door County.”

Soon, nearly all DCMC surgeons will be proficient in utilizing da Vinci technology. Dr. St. Jean is currently proctoring Dr. Scheer and Dr. Melarvie and works together with Intuitive Surgical representatives on their training. DCMC surgeons also receive additional training from the company off site through a standard curriculum.

Door County Medical Center is committed to continually bringing the most advanced technology to our community, but we never lose sight of the human connection that makes our hospital special. That’s why we are also committed to maintaining patient satisfaction scores in the 99th percentile, as we have, year after year.

Call to make an appointment for a consultation with one of our skilled surgeons today. (920) 746-1060

Expert Spinal Surgery, Close to Home

When we think of everyday healthcare, surgery doesn’t usually come to mind. But Ministry Door County Medical Center’s (MDCMC) surgery department provides a wide range of services, from orthopedics to general surgery to specialty surgery, to serve the community.

Dr. Andrew Greene, DO, has been providing specialized spinal surgery at MDCMC since 2014. He has extensive training and experience in treating degenerative spinal conditions, neck and back pain, disc herniation and scoliosis. Based in the Appleton area, his practice at MDCMC ensures that Door County residents can receive state of the art spinal surgery close to home.

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“I am a conservative surgeon whose philosophy is to treat patients as I would want to be treated,” says Dr. Greene. “I’m grateful for the opportunity to serve my patients with the latest advancements in all facets of non-operative and surgical treatment. I am focused on helping patients return to their desired quality of life.”

“Dr. Greene is an amazing surgeon,” says Gwen Haight, RN, surgical services manager at MDCMC. “From a nursing standpoint, I see how he really listens to his patients and focuses on them completely. He doesn’t jump into anything, because he wants to be sure his patient really needs the surgery. He is kind, warm and very precise –  everything you would want in a surgeon.”

A patient who recently had successful surgery with Dr. Greene says “I know that I couldn’t have had a better outcome in the care of Dr. Andrew Greene and his great staff.  And the fact that he was able to serve me right here at Ministry made it very convenient.”

Dr. Greene sees patients one day per month at North Shore Medical Clinic, and performs scheduled surgeries at MDCMC in Sturgeon Bay. To learn more, call (920) 746-0510.

Gwen Haight: Ready for Anything

As a surgical nurse for 27 years, Gwen Haight has worked all areas of surgery including outpatient, admitting and recovery, and of course, the operating room. But in her 17 years at Door County Medical Center, she’s only become more energized about her career.

gwen haight

“Surgery is exciting, because you have to be on your toes ready for anything, and be able to figure it out. That takes a lot of expertise and teamwork.” As manager of surgical services, Haight’s days are full of tasks ranging from coordinating schedules and communicating with surgeons and staff, to ordering up-to-date equipment, implementing protocols and working with volunteers. Above all, Haight is responsible for making sure the overall quality of the patient experience is excellent, and always improving. “It’s kind of like being a stay at home mom,” she laughs. “People ask, what did you do all day? The answer is: everything!”

Haight values her team, and looks forward to regular opportunities to collaborate with staff. “We have a lot of open dialogue.” She stays connected to nurses, physicians and techs by getting into the operating room nearly every day, and helping to discharge a patient or fill in when needed.

She also enjoys the patient education aspect of the surgical department. “Surgical patients often come in feeling nervous. We help them understand what to expect. We build that trust and then, post surgery, help them with everything they need to feel ready and confident when it’s time to go home.”

All the hard work pays off when Haight receives a phone call from a patient saying how excellent their experience was. “Knowing a patient received the care they wanted to receive is the ultimate reward,” she says. “And when I get to pass that appreciation on to our team, and make their day, it’s a great feeling.”

Outside of her role at DCMC, Haight stays busy as mother to five children, and also enjoys volunteering each year at the Door County Triathlon.  Despite her busy life, her passion for her work is fierce. “We’re here to serve those patients. We’re here to serve our community. That is the bottom line. We work hard every day to stay solid, and stay strong.”

Behind the Scenes: Dr. Brian Matysiak

Dr. Brian Matysiak, anesthesiologist at Ministry Door County Medical Center (MDCMC), found his specialty through an unconventional path. He began his academic career as a chemistry major, switched to engineering, and then decided to become a surgeon. But he discovered his true passion while in his surgical residency. “I was in an anesthesiology rotation, and I knew right away I had found my calling. Anesthesia is such an exciting area of practice. You need to be knowledgeable about anesthesia and overall medicine, and the work entails all the vital organs of the body,” he says.

Now in his fifth year of practice at MDCMC, Dr. Matysiak appreciates working in a community-based hospital. “I’ve practiced at larger hospitals, and I love the community feel and patient-centered focus here. Because there aren’t many intermediaries between patients and doctors, patients at MDCMC have direct, repeated contact with their providers. Those personal relationships are what make great care.”


Anesthesiology has changed in recent years. “It used to be that a doctor would meet with a patient just before surgery, and then provide medication. Now, we have much more involvement – working behind the scenes, getting patients ready for surgery and following up with patients and family members after a procedure.”

A team of three full-time anesthesiologists staff MDCMC: Matysiak is joined by colleagues Dr. Michael Bruno and Dr. Martin Finck. “We have a close professional and personal bond,” he says. “Unlike at larger hospitals, we work directly with our patients – not through intermediaries who administer medication for us.”

Dr. Matysiak is passionate about helping patients, but he’s just as passionate about living in Door County. He enjoys family time with his wife and two young children, taking hikes in the park or building sandcastles on the beach. “I love that I’m able to work, play and raise my family in the community, alongside my patients and colleagues.”