Tag Archive for: robotics

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Video: Robot Assisted Retroperitoneal Lymph Node Dissection

Robot-assisted retroperitoneal lymph node dissection: technique and initial case series of 18 patients

Scott M. Cheney, Paul E. Andrews, Bradley C. Leibovich* and Erik P. Castle

Mayo Clinic Arizona Department of Urology, Phoenix, AZ, and *Mayo Clinic Rochester Department of Urology, Rochester, MN, USA

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To evaluate outcomes of the first 18 patients treated with robot-assisted retroperitoneal lymph node dissection (RA-RPLND) for non-seminomatous germ cell tumours (NSGCT) and paratesticular rhabdomyosarcoma (RMS) at our institution.

PATIENTS AND METHODS

Between March 2008 and May 2013, 17 patients underwent RA-RPLND for NSGCT and one for paratesticular RMS. Data were collected retrospectively on patient demographics, preoperative tumour characteristics, and perioperative outcomes including open conversion rate, lymph node (LN) yield, rate of positive LNs, operative time, estimated blood loss (EBL), and length of stay (LOS). Perioperative outcomes were compared between patients receiving primary RA-RPLND vs post-chemotherapy RA-RPLND. Medium-term outcomes of tumour recurrence rate and maintenance of antegrade ejaculation were recorded.

RESULTS

RA-RPLND was completed robotically in 15 of 18 (83%) patients. LNs were positive in eight of 18 patients (44%). The mean LN yield was 22 LNs. For cases completed robotically, the mean operative time was 329 min, EBL was 103 mL, and LOS was 2.4 days. At a mean (range) follow-up of 22 (1–58) months, there were no retroperitoneal recurrences and two of 17 (12%) patients with NSGCT had pulmonary recurrences. Antegrade ejaculation was maintained in 91% of patients with a nerve-sparing approach. Patients receiving primary RA-RPLND had shorter operative times compared with those post-chemotherapy (311 vs 369 min, P = 0.03). There was no significant difference in LN yield (22 vs 18 LNs, P = 0.34), EBL (100 vs 313 mL, P = 0.13), or LOS (2.75 vs 2.2 days, P = 0.36).

CONCLUSION

This initial selected case series of RA-RPLND shows that the procedure is safe, reproducible, and feasible for stage I–IIB NSGCT and RMS in the hands of experienced robotic surgeons. Larger studies are needed to confirm the diagnostic and therapeutic utility of this technique.

Video: Bimanual Examination Of The Retrieved Specimen And Regional Hypothermia During Robot-Assisted Radical Prostatectomy: A Novel Technique For Reducing Positive Surgical Margin And Achieving Pelvic Cooling

Bimanual examination of the retrieved specimen and regional hypothermia during robot-assisted radical prostatectomy: a novel technique for reducing positive surgical margin and achieving pelvic cooling

Wooju Jeong, Akshay Sood, Khurshid R. Ghani, Dan Pucheril, Jesse D. Sammon, Nilesh S. Gupta*, Mani Menon and James O. Peabody

Vattikuti Urology Institute and *Department of Pathology, Henry Ford Health System, Detroit, MI, USA

OBJECTIVE

To describe a novel method of achieving pelvic hypothermia during robot-assisted radical prostatectomy (RARP) and a modification of technique allowing immediate organ retrieval for intraoperative examination and targeted frozen-section biopsies.

PATIENTS AND METHODS

Intracorporeal cooling and extraction (ICE) consists of a modification of the standard RARP technique with the use of the GelPOINT™ (Applied Medical, Rancho Santa Margarita, CA, USA), a hand access platform, which allows for delivery of ice-slush and rapid specimen extraction without compromising pneumoperitoneum.

RESULTS

The ICE technique reproducibly achieves a temperature of 15 °C in the pelvic cavity with no obvious body temperature change. Adopting this technique during RARP, there was an absolute risk reduction by 26.6% in positive surgical margin rate in patients with pT3a disease when compared with similar patients undergoing conventional RARP (P = 0.04).

CONCLUSIONS

The ICE technique eliminates the potential handicap of decreased tactile sensation for oncological margins, especially in the high-risk patients. This technique allows the surgeon to immediately examine the surgical specimen after resection, and with the aid of frozen-section pathology determine if further resection is required. A prospective trial is underway in our centre to evaluate the effects of this novel technique on postoperative outcomes.

 

Article of the Month: Comparing health-related QoL outcomes for robotic cystectomy with those of traditional open radical cystectomy

Every week the Editor-in-Chief selects the Article of the Week from the current issue of BJUI. The abstract is reproduced below and you can click on the button to read the full article, which is freely available to all readers for at least 30 days from the time of this post.

In addition to the article itself, there is an accompanying editorial written by a prominent member of the urological community. This blog is intended to provoke comment and discussion and we invite you to use the comment tools at the bottom of each post to join the conversation.

Finally, the third post under the Article of the Week heading on the homepage will consist of additional material or media. This week we feature a video from Dr. Dipen Parekh discussing his paper. 

If you only have time to read one article this week, it should be this one.

Health-related quality of life from a prospective randomised clinical trial of robot-assisted laparoscopic vs open radical cystectomy

Jamie C. Messer, Sanoj Punnen*, John Fitzgerald, Robert Svatek and Dipen J. Parekh

Department of Urology, University of Texas Health Sciences Center at San Antonio, San Antonio, TX and *Department of Urology, Miller School of Medicine, University of Miami, Miami, FL, USA

Objective

To compare health-related quality-of-life (HRQoL) outcomes for robot-assisted laparoscopic radical cystectomy (RARC) with those of traditional open radical cystectomy (ORC) in a prospective randomised fashion.

Patients and Methods

This was a prospective randomised clinical trial evaluating the HRQoL for ORC vs RARC in consecutive patients from July 2009 to June 2011. We administered the Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy–Vanderbilt Cystectomy Index questionnaire, validated to assess HRQoL, preoperatively and then at 3, 6, 9 and 12 months postoperatively. Scores for each domain and total scores were compared in terms of deviation from preoperative values for both the RARC and the ORC cohorts. Multivariate linear regression was used to assess the association between the type of radical cystectomy and HRQoL.

Results

At the time of the study, 47 patients had met the inclusion criteria, with 40 patients being randomised for analysis. The cohorts consisted of 20 patients undergoing ORC and 20 undergoing RARC, who were balanced with respect to baseline demographic and clinical features. Univariate analysis showed a return to baseline scores at 3 months postoperatively in all measured domains with no statistically significant difference among the various domains between the RARC and the ORC cohorts. Multivariate analysis showed no difference in HRQoL between the two approaches in any of the various domains, with the exception of a slightly higher physical well-being score in the RARC group at 6 months.

Conclusions

There were no significant differences in the HRQoL outcomes between ORC and RARC, with a return of quality of life scores to baseline scores 3 months after radical cystectomy in both cohorts.

Editorial: Robotic and conventional open radical cystectomy lead to similar postoperative health-related quality of life

In this month’s issue of BJU International, Messer et al. [1] devise a prospective randomised trial to compare postoperative health-related quality of life (HRQoL) after robot-assisted (RARC) vs conventional open radical cystectomy (ORC). The investigators evaluated 40 patients over a follow-up period of 1 year and found no significant difference in HRQoL between surgical approaches. Moreover, they showed that the postoperative decrease in HRQoL returns to baseline within 3 months of surgery.

RC is one of the most challenging and potentially mutilating surgical interventions in the urological field and represents the standard-of-care treatment for patients with muscle-invasive bladder cancer. It is associated with a non-negligible risk of morbidity and mortality [2]. With the advent of new technologies, such as the Da Vinci surgical robot, carefully designed studies are needed to weigh the potential benefits of a novel approach against the increased costs associated with such tools. While RARC holds the promise of combining the benefits of a minimally invasive intervention with the precise robotic translation of the surgeon’s movements, these claims remain to be definitely proven in the clinical setting. As such, further elucidating the effect of surgical approach on perioperative outcomes after RC is essential for treatment planning, patient counselling and informed decision-making before surgery.

QoL is increasingly used as a quantitative measure of treatment success [3, 4]. These measures are gaining considerable traction in the USA, as reimbursements will soon be tied to patient satisfaction. While previous retrospective studies suggest that RARC has comparable perioperative oncological outcomes with potentially lower morbidity relative to ORC [5], there is a scarcity of high-quality evidence on HRQoL outcomes of RARC vs ORC. The difficulties of conducting randomised trials in the surgical setting are reflected by the relatively few participants in the Messer et al. [1] trial. Nonetheless, in their pilot study, the authors demonstrated the feasibility of a HRQoL trial in RC patients. Furthermore, they deliver initial evidence on the impact of surgical approach on HRQoL after RC.

From a clinical perspective, the authors contribute interesting findings to the ongoing debate. Their results suggest that the potential benefits of robot-assisted surgery on HRQoL may be limited in patients undergoing complex oncological surgery such as RC. Several hypotheses may be pertinent to their conclusions. For example, performing an open urinary diversion after RARC that can take as much time as the actual extirpative RC may mitigate any potential benefit of the minimally invasive approach. Furthermore, the study findings may be largely influenced by the surgical skills of the participating surgeons. Maybe the correct interpretation of their study findings is that there was no significant difference in HRQoL outcomes between ORC and RARC, at the institution where the trial was performed.

Nonetheless, the authors suitably demonstrate the feasibility of performing a randomised trial in this field and pave the way towards adequately powered, randomised multicentre trials that can provide further evidence on what impact RARC may have on perioperative outcomes and beyond.

Julian Hanske, Florian Roghmann, Joachim Noldus and Quoc-Dien Trinh*

Department of Urology, Marien Hospital, Ruhr-University Bochum, Herne, Germany, and *Division of Urologic Surgery and Center for Surgery and Public Health, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA

References

1 Messer JC, Punnen S, Fitzgerald J, Svatek R, Parekh DJ. Health-related quality of life from a prospective randomised clinical trial of robot-assisted laparoscopic vs open radical cystectomy. BJU Int 2014; 114: 896–902

2 Roghmann F, Trinh QD, Braun K et al. Standardized assessment of complications in a contemporary series of European patients undergoing radical cystectomy. Int J Urol 2014; 21: 143–9

3 Cookson MS, Dutta SC, Chang SS, Clark T, Smith JA Jr, Wells N. Health related quality of life in patients treated with radical cystectomy and urinary diversion for urothelial carcinoma of the bladder: development and validation of a new disease specific questionnaire. J Urol 2003; 170: 1926–30

4 Loppenberg B, von Bodman C, Brock M, Roghmann F, Noldus J, Palisaar RJ. Effect of perioperative complications and functional outcomes on health-related quality of life after radical prostatectomy. Qual Life Res 2014. doi: 10.1007/s11136-014-0729-1

5 Kader AK, Richards KA, Krane LS, Pettus JA, Smith JJ, Hemal AK. Robot-assisted laparoscopic vs open radical cystectomy: comparison of complications and periopera

 

Video: Robot-assisted laparoscopic vs open radical cystectomy – health-related QoL from a prospective randomised clinical trial

Health-related quality of life from a prospective randomised clinical trial of robot-assisted laparoscopic vs open radical cystectomy

Jamie C. Messer, Sanoj Punnen*, John Fitzgerald, Robert Svatek and Dipen J. Parekh

Department of Urology, University of Texas Health Sciences Center at San Antonio, San Antonio, TX and *Department of Urology, Miller School of Medicine, University of Miami, Miami, FL, USA

Objective

To compare health-related quality-of-life (HRQoL) outcomes for robot-assisted laparoscopic radical cystectomy (RARC) with those of traditional open radical cystectomy (ORC) in a prospective randomised fashion.

Patients and Methods

This was a prospective randomised clinical trial evaluating the HRQoL for ORC vs RARC in consecutive patients from July 2009 to June 2011. We administered the Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy–Vanderbilt Cystectomy Index questionnaire, validated to assess HRQoL, preoperatively and then at 3, 6, 9 and 12 months postoperatively. Scores for each domain and total scores were compared in terms of deviation from preoperative values for both the RARC and the ORC cohorts. Multivariate linear regression was used to assess the association between the type of radical cystectomy and HRQoL.

Results

At the time of the study, 47 patients had met the inclusion criteria, with 40 patients being randomised for analysis. The cohorts consisted of 20 patients undergoing ORC and 20 undergoing RARC, who were balanced with respect to baseline demographic and clinical features. Univariate analysis showed a return to baseline scores at 3 months postoperatively in all measured domains with no statistically significant difference among the various domains between the RARC and the ORC cohorts. Multivariate analysis showed no difference in HRQoL between the two approaches in any of the various domains, with the exception of a slightly higher physical well-being score in the RARC group at 6 months.

Conclusions

There were no significant differences in the HRQoL outcomes between ORC and RARC, with a return of quality of life scores to baseline scores 3 months after radical cystectomy in both cohorts.

Video: Step-by-Step. Robotic assisted laparoscopic ureteral reimplantation – Extravesical approach

Robot-assisted laparoscopic ureteric reimplantation: extravesical technique

Pankaj P. Dangle 1,*,Anup Shah 2 and Mohan S. Gundeti 3,4

1 Department of Surgery, Division of Urology, University of Chicago Medicine and Biological Sciences, Chicago, IL, USA

2 Pritzker School of Medicine, University of Chicago Medicine and Biological Sciences, Chicago, IL, USA

3 Center for Pediatric Robotic and Minimal Invasive Surgery, Department of Surgery, Division of Urology, University of Chicago Medicine and Biological Sciences, Chicago, IL, USA

4 Comer Children’s Hospital, Chicago, IL, USA

Objectives

To describe our standardised approach to performing robot-assisted extravesical ureteric reimplantation.

Patients and Methods

A total of 29 children, with high grade (III–V) vesico-ureteric reflux (VUR) underwent robot-assisted extravesical ureteric reimplantation between September 2010 and September 2013. Follow-up renal ultrasonography was performed at 1 month and 3 months and a voiding cysto-urethrogram (VCUG) was obtained at 4 months to assess VUR resolution.

Results

The mean (range) patient age at the time of surgery was 5.38 (3.0–10.0) years. Postoperative VCUG showed complete resolution of VUR in 32/40 ureters (80%). Of the remaining refluxing ureters, downgrading of VUR on VCUG was shown in 7/8 ureters (87.5%). The mean (range) length of hospital stay was 1.8 (1–3) days.

Conclusions

In conclusion, robot-assisted extravesical ureteric reimplantation is technically feasible with acceptable resolution of VUR.

Step-by-Step: Robotic retroperitoneal partial nephrectomy

Robotic retroperitoneal partial nephrectomy: a step-by-step guide

Khurshid R. Ghani, James Porter*, Mani Menon and Craig Rogers

Vattikuti Urology Institute, Henry Ford Hospital, Detroit, MI, and *Department of Urology, Swedish Urology Group, Seattle, WA, USA

OBJECTIVE

To describe a step-by-step guide for successful implementation of the retroperitoneal approach to robotic partial nephrectomy (RPN)

PATIENTS AND METHODS

The patient is placed in the flank position and the table fully flexed to increase the space between the 12th rib and iliac crest. Access to the retroperitoneal space is obtained using a balloon-dilating device. Ports include a 12-mm camera port, two 8-mm robotic ports and a 12-mm assistant port placed in the anterior axillary line cephalad to the anterior superior iliac spine, and 7–8 cm caudal to the ipsilateral robotic port.

RESULTS

Positioning and port placement strategies for successful technique include: (i) Docking robot directly over the patient’s head parallel to the spine; (ii) incision for camera port ≈1.9 cm (1 fingerbreadth) above the iliac crest, lateral to the triangle of Petit; (iii) Seldinger technique insertion of kidney-shaped balloon dilator into retroperitoneal space; (iv) Maximising distance between all ports; (v) Ensuring camera arm is placed in the outer part of the ‘sweet spot’.

CONCLUSION

The retroperitoneal approach to RPN permits direct access to the renal hilum, no need for bowel mobilisation and excellent visualisation of posteriorly located tumours.

 

Step-by-Step: Robotic kidney transplantation

Robotic kidney transplantation with intraoperative regional hypothermia

Ronney Abaza, Khurshid R. Ghani*, Akshay Sood*, Rajesh Ahlawat†, Ramesh K. Kumar*, Wooju Jeong*, Mahendra Bhandari*, Vijay Kher† and Mani Menon*

Department of Urology, Ohio State University, Columbus, OH, *Vattikuti Urology Institute, Henry Ford Hospital, Detroit, MI, USA, and †Kidney and Urology Institute, Medanta-The Medicity, Gurgaon, India

OBJECTIVE

• To describe a novel and reproducible technique of robotic kidney transplantation (RKT) that requires no repositioning, and permits intraoperative regional hypothermia.

PATIENTS AND METHODS

• A GelPOINT™ (Applied Medical, Santa Ranchero, CA, USA) access port was used for delivery of ice-slush and introduction of the graft kidney. The new RKT technique using ice-slush has been performed in 39 patients.

RESULTS

• At a mean follow-up of 3 months all of the grafts functioned. There was a marked reduction in pain and analgesic requirement compared with patients undergoing open KT, with a propensity towards quicker graft recovery and lower complication rate.

CONCLUSION

• RKT has been shown to be safe and feasible in patients undergoing living-donor related KT. A prospective trial is underway to assess outcomes definitively.

 

Article of the week: Quality of life after robotic cystectomy

Every week the Editor-in-Chief selects the Article of the Week from the current issue of BJUI. The abstract is reproduced below and you can click on the button to read the full article, which is freely available to all readers for at least 30 days from the time of this post.

In addition to the article itself, there is an accompanying editorial written by a prominent member of the urological community. This blog is intended to provoke comment and discussion and we invite you to use the comment tools at the bottom of each post to join the conversation.

If you only have time to read one article this week, it should be this one.

Short-term patient reported health-related quality of life (HRQL) outcomes after robot-assisted radical cystectomy (RARC)

Michael A. Poch, Andrew P. Stegemann, Shabnam Rehman, Mohamed A. Sharif, Abid Hussain, Joseph D. Consiglio*, Gregory E. Wilding* and Khurshid A. Guru

Departments of Urology and *Biostatistics, Roswell Park Cancer Institute, Buffalo, NY, USA

OBJECTIVE

• To determine short-term health-related quality of life (HRQL) outcomes after robot-assisted radical cystectomy (RARC) using the Bladder Cancer Index (BCI) and European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC) Body Image Scale (BIS).

PATIENTS AND METHODS

• All patients undergoing RARC were enrolled in a quality assurance database.

• The patients completed two validated questionnaires, BCI and BIS, preoperatively and at standardised postoperative intervals.

• The primary outcome measure was difference in interval and baseline BCI and BIS scores.

• Complications were identified and classified by Clavien grade.

RESULTS

• In all, 43 patients completed pre- and postoperative questionnaires.

• There was a decline in the urinary domain at 0–1 month after RARC (P = 0.006), but this returned to baseline by 1–2 months.

• There was a decline in the bowel domain at 0–1 month (P < 0.001) and 1–2 months (P = 0.024) after RARC, but this returned to baseline by 2–4 months.

• The decline in BCI scores was greatest for the sexual function domain, but this returned to baseline by 16–24 months after RARC.

• Body image perception using BIS showed no significant change after RARC except at the 4–10 months period (P = 0.018).

CONCLUSIONS

• Based on BCI and BIS scores HRQL outcomes after RARC show recovery of urinary and bowel domains ≤6 months. Longer follow-up with a larger cohort of patients will help refine HRQL outcomes.

 

Editorial: The evolution of robotic cystectomy

A decade has passed since the publication of the first series of robot-assisted radical cystectomies in the BJUI by Menon et al. [1]. New technologies are fascinating, and many surgeons who aspire to leave a mark in history take the lead in pioneering new procedures. Others follow without waiting for any evidence to justify the adoption of new procedures. In this race, the opinion of the most important stakeholder, the patient, gets ignored.

Although their study has many methodological flaws, Guru et al. [2] have made the effort to collect data on patients’ health-related quality of life (HRQL) after robot-assisted radical cystectomy for bladder cancer. Radical cystectomy is a morbid procedure with a serious impact on patients’ HRQL, no matter how it is performed. Loosing an organ which is responsible for the storage and evacuation of urine several times a day and replacing it with alternatives of continent or incontinent diversion has a serious impact on quality of life, as is evident from this study.

Robotic cystectomy is still evolving. With more experience, a few experts have ventured to perform intracorporeal reconstruction of the urinary diversion. While we await the long-term functional outcomes of this switch over in surgical approach, Guru et al. report the short-term HQRL outcomes in a series of 43 patients undergoing robot-assisted radical cystectomy and intracorporeal urinary diversion at their institution. Most patients (n = 38) had ileal conduit urinary diversion. The authors went on to compare the postoperative outcomes of this cohort with another group of 70 patients who only completed the questionnaire after having undergone robot-assisted radical cystectomy and extracorporeal urinary diversion.

It is interesting to note that there was no significant difference in HRQL between those undergoing extracorporeal and those undergoing intracorporeal reconstruction. These outcomes reinforce the need to gather robust scientific evidence from properly conducted multi-centre, multinational randomized trials before the introduction of new procedures, instead of evaluation with retrospective studies. The urological community has embraced new technologies and patients have benefited a great deal from these innovative approaches; however, it is incumbent upon us to develop a culture of independent, unbiased data collection on outcomes. In this regard we must make the HQRL one of the most important quality indicators in assessment of the new procedures. Such an approach will enable us to justify the extra cost which society has to bear for our innovative trends in the management of old problems [3].

Muhammad Shamim Khan
Guy’s and St Thomas’s Hospital and King’s College London, London, UK

References

  1. Menon M, Hemal AK, Tewari A et al. Nerve-sparing robot-assisted radical cystoprostatectomy and urinary diversionBJU Int 2003; 92: 232–236
  2. Poch MA, Stegemann AP, Rehman S et al. Short-term patient reported health-related quality of life (HRQL) outcomes after robot-assisted radical cystectomy (RARC)BJU Int 2014; 113: 260–265
  3. Wang TT, Ahmed KA, Khan MS et al. Quality-of-care framework in urological cancers: where do we stand? BJU Int 2011; 109: 1436–1443

 

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