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News releases

Sept. 23, 2013
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First in the state robotic-assisted weight-loss procedure performed at Sanford Health

(Bismarck, N.D.)—Bree Dewing, MD, general and weight-loss surgeon with the west region of Sanford Health, recently performed the first robotic-assisted gastric sleeve surgery in North Dakota using the da Vinci® surgical system.

During gastric sleeve surgery, also known as sleeve gastrectomy, the majority of the stomach is removed. The procedure results in a smaller area for food to be stored, which leads to weight loss. This procedure can be performed using open surgery, traditional laparoscopy or da Vinci surgery. With da Vinci, the surgeon can make just a few small incisions, similar to traditional laparoscopy, instead of a large abdominal incision. Benefits of this less-invasive surgery may include fewer complications, a reduced risk of infection and a shorter hospital stay than traditional methods.

Sanford Health in Bismarck has two weight-loss surgeons, Dr. Dewing and Steven Bock, MD, who are experienced in performing gastric bypass, gastric sleeve and gastric banding procedures. To learn more about weight-loss surgery at Sanford, visit

About Sanford Health
Sanford Health is an integrated health system headquartered in the Dakotas and is now the largest, rural, not-for-profit health care system in the nation with locations in 126 communities in nine states. In addition, Sanford Health is in the process of developing international clinics in Ghana, Israel, Mexico and China.

Sanford Health includes 39 hospitals, 140 clinic locations and 1,360 physicians in 81 specialty areas of medicine. With more than 26,000 employees, Sanford Health is the largest employer in North and South Dakota. The system is experiencing dynamic growth and development in conjunction with nearly a billion dollars in gifts from philanthropist Denny Sanford. These gifts are making possible the implementation of several initiatives including global children's clinics, multiple research centers and finding cures for type 1 diabetes and breast cancer. For more information, please visit
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