“Paediatric Robotic Surgery in Clinical Practice: A Cost Analysis.”
Anderberg, M., C. C. Kockum, et al. (2009).
Eur J Pediatr Surg 19(5): 311-315.
BACKGROUND: Since 2006 we have used robotic assistance when performing minimally invasive laparoscopic fundoplications in children. We compared the costs of robotic surgery with the costs for open and laparoscopic surgery to test our hypothesis that the increased costs of the new technology are acceptable. METHOD: Costs were calculated using the regional hospital prices for our first 14 fundoplications in children, performed with the aid of the da Vinci ((R)) Surgical System from Intuitive Surgical ((R)). We compared these costs with those of our ten latest fundoplications performed using open and laparoscopic surgery, respectively. There were no differences in the demographic data, work-up or indications for surgery between the three groups of children. RESULTS: The mean cost of robotic surgical fundoplications (EUR 9 584) was 7% higher than the mean cost of laparoscopic surgery (EUR 8 982) and 9% lower than the mean costs for open surgical procedures (EUR 10 521). These differences can be explained by the increased cost of robotic instruments (EUR 2 081 per operation). The duration of the operation and the duration of in-hospital stay are comparable to those of laparoscopic surgical interventions. The time required for the operative intervention was considerably longer than for the open surgical procedure; the duration of the in-hospital stay was only half of that of the open surgical procedure. The patients seemed to benefit from the use of robotic instruments with less morphine (as a marker of less postoperative pain) and a shorter hospital stay. CONCLUSION: The introduction of robotic assistance into surgical practice involves increased in-hospital costs, mainly because of the cost of the new instruments. This increase in cost can be offset by the shorter hospital stay compared to open surgery. After laparoscopic surgery the hospital stay is about the same as after operations performed with robotic assistance. Cheaper instruments and shorter operating time will make robotic surgery cost efficient in the future. The benefit for the patients is less trauma due to the use of minimally invasive surgery and a shorter hospital stay. Thus, the higher initial costs may be considered worthwhile.
“Port-site complications after pediatric urologic robotic surgery.”
Tapscott, A., S. S. Kim, et al. (2009).
Journal of Robotic Surgery: 1-4.
The incidence of port-site hernia development after adult laparoscopic surgery is reported to be between 0.1% and 3.0%. There are no published reports concerning hernia incidence or related factors after pediatric urologic laparoscopic interventions. We present our experience with port-site complications following pediatric urologic robotic surgery (PURS). From July 2005 to June 2009 we prospectively followed the first 200 PURS cases performed at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. All cases had follow-up available for at least 2 months postoperatively. The data collected allowed for evaluation of the outcomes for each port site separately and compared its size, location, and fascial closure status. Median age was 3.2 years (0.4-18.8 years). All 200 patients had follow-up with median of 11 months (0.2-83.4 months). There were 600 port sites analyzed in the 200 cases. Of the 600 port sites, 200 were umbilical. The other 400 port sites were lateral to the rectus muscle, either subcostal or at the level of the anterior superior iliac spine. There was no wound irrigation prior to closure on any sites. All the patients received perioperative antibiotics. One umbilical port had a hernia diagnosed 2 weeks postoperatively. Four of the 600 ports (0.6%) developed skin dehiscence secondary to superficial wound infection within 1 week postoperatively. At our institution, the overall incidence of port-site complications after PURS was 0.83%. This is slightly lower than the published incidence in adults undergoing conventional laparoscopy. Due to the low incidence of complications it is difficult to draw conclusions on contributing factors. © 2009 Springer-Verlag London Ltd.