Hypothesis Robotic surgery for performance of right hepatectomy is safe and effective.
Design Case series from 2 medical institutions.
Setting University of Illinois at Chicago and Misericordia Hospital, Grosseto, Italy.
Patients Twenty-four patients underwent right hepatectomy between March 1, 2005, and January 31, 2010, using a robotic surgical system.
Main Outcome Measures Intraoperative blood loss, operative time, morbidity, mortality, and long-term oncologic follow-up.
Results The procedure was converted to open surgery in 1 patient (4.2%). The overall mean (SD) operative time was 337 (65) minutes (range, 240-480 minutes), and the mean (SD) intraoperative blood loss was 457 (401) mL (range, 100-2000 mL). Three patients (12.5%) underwent blood transfusion. There were no perioperative deaths and no reoperations. Six patients (25.0%) experienced postoperative morbidity, including transitory liver failure in 2 patients and pleural effusion, bile leak, fluid collection, and deep venous thrombosis in 1 patient each. The patients' diagnoses included colorectal liver metastases (n = 11), noncolorectal liver metastases (n = 4), hemangioma (n = 4), adenoma (n = 2), hepatocellular carcinoma (n = 1), hepatoblastoma (n = 1), and biliary amartoma (n = 1). At a mean follow-up duration of 34 months, no port site metastases were observed in patients with malignant pathologic findings.
Conclusions The zero mortality and acceptable morbidity of our series indicate that in experienced hands, robotic right hepatectomy is feasible and safe. Robotic surgery offers a new technical option for minimally invasive major hepatic resections. Long-term results seem to confirm oncologic effectiveness of the procedure.