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Breakthrough for Lung Cancer

A $500,000 grant from the Rose Koehler Curtze Fund at Hamot Health Foundation provided UPMC Hamot with the first robotic navigational bronchoscopy system available in the United States.


Dr. Stephen P. Kovacs is the trailblazer behind this incredible new technology that is showing physicians lung anatomy that has never been seen before. There are only two other countries using the Auris Health Monarch™ Platform, which means UPMC Hamot will be leading both the nation and the world in this cutting-edge technology. Dr. Kovacs actually helped design the system, and he is one of 40 clinicians worldwide who has been trained on it.

Using a minimally invasive endoscope, this robotic system allows specialists to see inside the lungs, obtain a tissue sample for biopsy, and get earlier and more accurate diagnoses of small and hard-to-reach nodules in the lungs. This gives physicians new navigational stability and the ability to go even further into the lungs than ever before.

More than 90 percent of people diagnosed with lung cancer do not survive the disease, mainly because most patients don’t present symptoms until it’s too late. Erie has an especially high population of patients with lung cancer, and this technology will enable us to save many more lives through early detection and early treatment.

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