CME Article: Comparison of Robotic and Laparoscopic Colectomies Using the 2019 ACS NSQIP Database
AbstractObjectives: Robot-assisted laparoscopic surgeries (RLSs) have become increasingly common in the past decade alongside conventional laparoscopic surgeries (CLSs). In general, RLSs have been reported to be superior to CLSs; therefore, we compared both methods among patients undergoing an elective colectomy for differences in perioperative factors and postoperative complications.
Methods: A retrospective analysis was conducted using the 2019 American College of Surgeons National Surgical Quality Improvement Program (ACS NSQIP) database. We stratified 5879 patients into two cohorts according to their preoperative diagnosis of either colon cancer or chronic diverticulitis. Patients within each group were further stratified by operative approach.
Results: Of the 5879 patients, 3210 colon cancer and 2669 chronic diverticulitis patients underwent an elective colectomy. There were no differences in length of stay and time from operation to discharge between RLSs and CLSs. RLSs, however, had significantly longer operation times (minutes; colon cancer: RLS 242.9 ± 91.0 vs CLS 177.4 ± 78.2, P < 0.001; chronic diverticulitis: RLS 226.2 ± 87.4 vs CLS 181.7 ± 74.4, P < 0.001). Among all of the colon cancer patients, RLS had higher rates of unplanned return to the operating room (P = 0.028) and organ space surgical site infection (P = 0.035). Among chronic diverticulitis patients, RLS was associated with higher rates of postoperative sepsis, anastomotic leak, organ space surgical site infection, and unplanned readmission (all P < 0.05).
Conclusions: CLS may be the more efficient operative technique because it was associated with a shorter average operation time and fewer postoperative complications. This paradigm, however, may change as the robotic technology develops and surgeons become more experienced with RLS.
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