Robotic Surgery Preferred for Most Colorectal Cancer Surgeries

Advantage not seen for robotic low anterior resection, which has increased risk for serious complications
Robotic Surgery Preferred for Most Colorectal Cancer Surgeries
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Medically Reviewed By:
Meeta Shah, M.D.

THURSDAY, Jan. 11, 2024 (HealthDay News) -- Robotic surgery for colorectal cancer (CRC) offers an advantage over conventional laparoscopy by improving textbook outcomes for right colectomy (RC) and left colectomy (LC), according to a study recently published in the World Journal of Surgical Oncology.

Emile Farah, M.D., from the University of Texas Southwestern (UTSW) Medical Center in Dallas, and colleagues compared robotic and laparoscopic surgery for CRC among a national cohort of 53,209 patients (2015 to 2020). Laparoscopic to robotic cases were matched 2:1 for RC and LC and 1:1 for low anterior resection (LAR).

The researchers found that robotic surgery was significantly associated with an increased rate of textbook outcomes compared to laparoscopy in RC and LC but not in LAR (RC: 71 versus 64 percent; LC: 75 versus 68 percent). Major morbidity was significantly associated with robotic LAR (7.1 versus 5.8 percent). The mean conversion rate of robotic surgery was significantly lower than laparoscopy for all three procedures (4.3 versus 9.2 percent). Mean operative time was significantly higher for robotic procedures (225 versus 177 minutes).

"Robotic surgery for colectomies is quickly becoming the preferred approach due to its multiple benefits for the surgeon, which include better 3D visualization and a stable camera, improved dexterity and instrument control, and reduced fatigue and hand tremor," lead author Patricio M. Polanco, M.D., also from UTSW, said in a statement. "Prior to this study, however, there was little real-world evidence demonstrating its efficacy compared to laparoscopic techniques."

Abstract/Full Text

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