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Baton Rouge General Among First in U.S. to Use Innovative Robotic Technology for Lung Cancer Diagnosis

BATON ROUGE, La. – Baton Rouge General (BRG) today announced a new innovation that holds promise to fight lung cancer. Used to view the inside of the lungs and obtain a tissue sample for biopsy, the Monarch™ Platform can mean earlier, more accurate diagnosis of small and hard-to-reach lung nodules. BRG is among the first hospitals in the United States – and the first in Louisiana -- to use Monarch, which was recently cleared by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

“Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer deaths worldwide, in part because it has no symptoms in its early stages,” said Dr. Stephen Brierre, chief of critical care and pulmonology at BRG. “Lung cancer screenings with low dose CT scans have helped improve survival for patients, but there is more work to do. Current technology has several limitations, including the ability to biopsy and detect cancer in small and difficult-to-reach nodules. With the addition of the minimally invasive Monarch technology, we can reach these nodules, leading to safer, quicker diagnosis, and the potential for a cure.”

The technology integrates the latest advancements in robotics, software, data science and endoscopy (the use of small cameras and tools to enter the body through its natural openings). The Monarch platform uses a familiar controller-like interface that physicians use to navigate the flexible, robotic endoscope to hard-to-reach areas of the lung with improved vision and control throughout the entire procedure.

Coupling this technology with BRG’s Lung Screening Clinic means the community has access to the latest innovations in lung cancer care with a patient-focused, comprehensive approach. As part of the Lung Screening Clinic, patients who meet certain criteria like age and smoking habits are flagged by their primary care physician for an annual low-dose CT scan. After a patient has the low-dose CT scan, the results go to a patient navigator and a multidisciplinary team of clinicians who then review the patient’s case.

Physicians – including pulmonologists and thoracic surgeons – will begin training on the Monarch, with patient procedures slated to begin in November. The Monarch platform is powered by Auris Health.

About Baton Rouge General Medical Center
Baton Rouge General Medical Center is the area’s first community hospital with over 600 licensed beds between three campuses. Baton Rouge General opened its doors in 1900, and has provided the Greater Baton Rouge community with high-quality healthcare for generations. An accredited teaching hospital since 1991, Baton Rouge General is affiliated with several medical school programs, and offers other medical education programs, including a School of Nursing, School of Radiologic Technology, Family Medicine Residency Program, Internal Medicine Residency Program, and Sports Medicine Fellowship Program. For more information, visit, find us on Facebook at and follow us on Twitter @BRGeneral and Instagram @batonrougegeneral.