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Kelly’s story

Kelly Rose was the first patient to undergo robotic surgery at Bedfordshire Hospitals. She tells her story here

Kelly Rose is 38 and lives in Bedford with her three school-age children. Kelly was the first patient to undergo robotic assisted surgery at Bedfordshire Hospitals.

Kelly with the da Vinci robot

Her operation was carried out on 17 April 2023 at Bedford Hospital by Colorectal surgeon Mrs Katharine Bevan.

Kelly had been diagnosed with rectal cancer in August 2022 following a colonoscopy. She then

underwent courses of radiotherapy and chemotherapy, which were successful at reducing the size of the cancer. Following this, Kelly had an operation in Bedford hospital on 17 April to remove the section of the bowel with the remaining cancer cells within it.

Kelly with Katharine at console of the da Vinci robot

The operation was a success, she has made a good recovery and is now cancer free, remaining under close surveillance with the hospital team.

Talking about the upcoming surgery Kelly said: “I was extremely nervous about having the operation, largely because I lost my mum who died unexpectedly during an operation when I was in my 20s.

“Mrs Bevan knew how scared I was, but her confidence and ability to make people feel so at home, even though I was in a hospital, helped reassure me.

“I was in hospital for five days, and then was able to go home. My recovery has been good, and I am getting fitter and fitter – in fact I am planning a sky dive to raise money for a bowel cancer charity as a way of saying thank you for my care.

“I knew I was to be one of the first patients undergoing Robotic Assisted surgery, but at the time did not know I was to be the very first!

“When I was told a couple of weeks after the operation, I was so excited! It is amazing to think I was the first at Bedfordshire Hospitals.

“I was invited in to see the robot in theatre which was a once in a lifetime experience, it’s an amazing thing. Mrs Bevan explained how it worked, and I also got to meet some of the other staff who had been involved with my operation which was lovely.

“I am so grateful to Mrs Bevan and the whole team, they saved my life.”

1. Kelly with Mrs Bevan (left), Theatre Manager Natasha Lynch and Nimisha Palickal, Senior Nurse Practitioner