Robotic Rectal Cancer Resection: A Retrospective Multicenter Analysis
Conventional laparoscopy has been applied to colorectal resections for more than 2 decades. However, laparoscopic rectal resection is technically demanding, especially when performing a tumor-specific mesorectal excision in a difficult pelvis. Robotic surgery is uniquely designed to overcome most of these technical limitations. The aim of this study was to confirm the feasibility of robotic rectal cancer surgery in a large multicenter study.
Retrospective data of 425 patients who underwent robotic tumor-specific mesorectal excision for rectal lesions at seven institutions were collected. Outcome data were analyzed for the overall cohort and were stratified according to obese versus non-obese and low versus ultra-low resection patients.
Mean age was 60.9 years, and 57.9 % of patients were male. Overall, 51.3 % of patients underwent neoadjuvant therapy, while operative time was 240 min, mean blood loss 119 ml, and intraoperative complication rate 4.5 %. Mean number of lymph nodes was 17.4, with a positive circumferential margin rate of 0.9 %. Conversion rate to open was 5.9 %, anastomotic leak rate was 8.7 %, with a mean length of stay of 5.7 days. Operative times were significantly longer and re-admission rate higher for the obese population, with all other parameters comparable. Ultra-low resections also had longer operative times.
Robotic-assisted minimally invasive surgery for the treatment of rectal cancer is safe and can be performed according to current oncologic principles. BMI seems to play a minor role in influencing outcomes. Thus, robotics might be an excellent treatment option for the challenging patient undergoing resection for rectal cancer.
Ouellette, J. R.,
Lagares-Garcia, J. A.,
Rauh, S. M.,
Kennedy, H. L.,
Nicholson, J. D.,
Johnson, C. S.,
& Pigazzi, A.
(2015). Robotic Rectal Cancer Resection: A Retrospective Multicenter Analysis. Annals of Surgical Oncology, 22 (7), 2151-2158.