My Favorites

Saint Francis Hospital is pleased to announce it is the first hospital in Connecticut to perform a lung biopsy using the Ion endoluminal system, a minimally invasive, robotic-assisted technology made by Intuitive. Today, a team of pulmonology and thoracic specialists, led by Anil Magge, M.D., Director of Interventional Pulmonology, performed the first procedure. The hospital recently added the Ion system to its options available for patients who are in need of lung biopsy procedures, allowing surgeons to obtain tissue samples from deep within the lung and potentially detect lung cancer threats sooner.

“The Ion robotic platform is a game changer for Saint Francis Hospital and Trinity Health Of New England,” said Dr. Magge. “It will allow for early detection of cancerous lung nodules or masses with increased precision and accuracy, along with decreased risk of complications. Given the catheter’s flexibility and shape sensing technology, it allows the ability to biopsy very small nodules in difficult to reach areas in the periphery of the lung that are concerning for cancer. Additionally, the future of this technology is promising. For patients who are too sick or frail to undergo surgery for removal of cancerous lung nodules, therapies such as bronchoscopic ablation may be a possibility in the near future due to the system’s unprecedented stability. I am proud to work at a hospital that is invested in providing patients with the most cutting-edge technology to give them the best outcomes.”

The Ion system features an ultra-thin, ultra-maneuverable catheter that allows navigation far into the lung, addressing a challenging aspect of lung biopsy. Along with unparalleled stability, this enables the precision needed for biopsy compared to other technologies.

“We are thrilled to be the Connecticut leader in this field,” said Thomas Burke, BPharm, M.B.A., President of Saint Francis Hospital. “We are investing in minimally invasive options and leading-edge technology to deliver life-enhancing care to our patients. We are committed to providing our patients with the very best care possible and are proud to be the only hospital in the state to be currently utilizing the Ion system.”

During bronchoscopy with the Ion robotic platform, the physician uses a console to navigate to the target within the lung along a pre-planned pathway. The catheter can move 180° in any direction to pass through small, difficult to navigate airways to reach the lung nodule of concern. Ion’s peripheral vision probe provides direct vision during navigation. Once at the desired location, the catheter locks into place and biopsy tools are then passed through the catheter to take a sample of the nodule.

For more information on minimally invasive lung biopsy options at Trinity Health Of New England, visit

About Saint Francis Hospital

Saint Francis Hospital has been an anchor institution in Connecticut since 1897. Saint Francis is a member of Trinity Health Of New England and Trinity Health, one of the largest multi-institutional Catholic health care delivery systems in the nation. Saint Francis Hospital, a Level 1 Trauma Center, is a 617-bed hospital, a major teaching hospital, and the largest Catholic hospital in New England. Other Saint Francis entities include the Comprehensive Women’s Health Center, the Connecticut Joint Replacement Institute, the Hoffman Heart and Vascular Institute of Connecticut, the Smilow Cancer Hospital Yale-New Haven at Saint Francis, Trinity Health Of New England Medical Group, and Community Health and Well Being, which includes the Curtis D. Robinson Center for Health Equity, the Joan C. Dauber Food Pantry, and the Greater Hartford Family Advocacy Center. Follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter @SaintFrancisCT.

About Intuitive

Intuitive, headquartered in Sunnyvale, California, is a global leader in minimally invasive care and the pioneer of robotic surgery. Our technologies include the da Vinci surgical system and the Ion endoluminal system. By uniting advanced systems, progressive learning, and value-enhancing services, we help physicians and their teams optimize care delivery to support the best outcomes possible. At Intuitive, we envision a future of care that is less invasive and profoundly better, where diseases are identified early and treated quickly, so patients can get back to what matters most.